Education

I'm going to preface this by stating that, in my opinion, the American public education system is in such a shitty place, it's unbelievable. A high school in Rhode Island fired every single on of its teachers and guidance counselors this week. All of them. My first reaction was that it was insane overkill. Yes, there are terrible, worthless teachers, and the seem to tend to be the ones who stick by doing things by THE BOOK. Teachers who couldn't give less of a shit about the students learning, let alone enjoying it. Monotone mumblers who spend forty five minutes lecturing, and five minutes answering questions. No creativity to help secure interest, not adjustment for anything or anyone. Go ahead and fire them. They need fired. From everywhere. But in every school, there are at least a few good teachers. They get passionate about what they're teaching, they do everything they can to make it interesting and fun, to avoid lecturing numbly. These are the teachers the more intelligent kids seek out, during passing periods, study hall, after school. Not just for help with the coursework, but just to talk, exchange books and ideas, maybe even ask for advice. These are the teachers I still visit with sometimes, when I'm in my home town. They should not have been fired. Then the facts started coming in, from both sides.Most of the staff earned between $72,000 and $78,000. That seemed quite high. I checked into it a little, and it is. Less than half of the students graduate. Over half of the student body is failing in ever subject. Only 38% are proficient in reading comprehension and writing skills, and on seven percent are considered proficient in mathematics. Wow. 75% are living at the poverty level, or under. The overall ability of the students has improved over the last two years. Language skills went up a bit, and math skills went up 4% All teachers are welcome to re-apply for their jobs, for less pay. The school board had decided that some things were going to change. Another hour added to the school day, bringing it up to a seven hour school day (which still seems short to me) and the requirement that teachers make themselves available for tutoring and a ninety minute meeting every week were supposedly the sticking points. The teacher's union wouldn't agree, so they were all fired. And, the firing of all staff is one federally mandated plan for improving schools, so it's legal and all. So, now it's more complicated, I 'm not sure what to think. Surely some of the teachers would have been willing to stay, and take a pay cut, individually. It just seems so.. drastic. But I can't think for a good alternative, other then having interviews and picking through them one by one, which I'm trying to find out if such a practice is legal or not. Alright, I want some opinions. I even gave you all of the facts I know, you don't have to go offsite. Please, let's all discuss this.

View Thinker #77406d's profile

Also, these are the facts and figures I got from CNN. If you've heard or know something's different, go ahead and tell me. Unless Rush Limbaugh said it :P

View Thinker #277dd3's profile

My mom is in the public school system here. According to her, the actual teaching aspect is brutal. Teachers are punished for creativity, as in, new teachers are given strict curricula and not allowed to deviate from them. Apparently most of them break down pretty quickly; it's not that they went into it without passion, it's that the system forced the passion out of them. Think of this: if you don't love to teach, why would you ever want to do it professionally? It might be different in other places, but it's terrible here. From what I've heard, anyway. My personal view might also be skewed since I had a really bad time in public school (but for what it's worth, I also had a really bad time in private school).

View Thinker #fc785d's profile

This is why if I ever had kids, I'd homeschool. If they were up to it. Some kids just aren't cut out for independent study...and I realize that. My brother hated being away from his friends, while I loved the freedom I got to study anything and everything I ever wanted, whenever I wanted.

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