Wednesday, August 31, 2011

WTF Wednesday

So I'm sure that I'm not the only one that thinks of a billion things every day to blog about and then you forget about all of them when you're actually in front of the computer.  And believe me, working at a high school, there's a lot of potential blog material!  Today, I can actually remember something.

First, let me just say, today I saw a history teacher teaching about the 13 original colonies, and he/she spelled Connecticut wrong.  (She left out the middle c) and then he/she spelled Williams wrong (left out the second i) was kind of surprised, just because I think he/she's been teaching for probably at least like 15 years, and you would think that those words would pop up enough over 15 years in U.S. History and Government classes that you could spell them.  And he/she teaches English, so you know, spelling and stuff.....

So the other thing that I'm like WTF?! at, is what's going on in Georgia with education.  I don't remember all the details, but there are a bunch of educators being accused of cheating on state tests.  We're not talking students here, we're talking teachers and principals.  So far, 82 of them have confessed.  Some people are even saying that teachers would have parties where they would get together and change answers on students' tests so that they would score better.  One principal retired after accusations of ordering his teachers to do so.

Why are they doing this?

Because according to No Child Left Behind, all schools need to have 100% of their students testing at a proficient level by 2015 or the school will get shut down.  (Don't go crazy if I'm getting facts wrong, I'm not claiming to be an expert on this, I'm just stating what I remember from hearing on the news.)

Also, the amount of government funding a school receives, are based on test scores.  A large majority of the educators being accused of this cheating, work for districts in some of the poorest parts of Atlanta.  Obviously, these schools aren't going to have a ton of money to work with, and they're not getting a lot of help from funding because of test scores.

This same thing is going on in several other states.

Obviously, there's a huge problem here.  I take that back, there are SEVERAL huge problems here.  Now, I'm already not a huge fan of standardized testing anyways, but that's a whole other rant for another day, but I have some questions about these problems.
1-What is going on in the classroom that makes it so the students are not able to perform 'proficiently'. (The way the teachers are teaching? Not having the funding to get the resources needed to learn? Is attendance maybe an issue there?)
2-Why do kids that are maybe not as smart as other (kids below 'proficient') deserve any less funding than the ones that are testing proficient or above? (Um.....isn't this where the whole 'all men created equal' thing comes in?  Oh, wait, most of our country doesn't believe in that anymore.)
3-Okay, so the teachers are trying to get funding and not get their schools shut down and keep their jobs, but really?  Cheating???  What's THAT teaching your students?  Cheating on a state test is a federal offense and so by cheating, they're putting themselves in danger of a conviction and jail time.  How's that for losing your job?(And probably your teaching license)

Alright, I just had to get the off my chest.  Happier blog coming soon.

Oh, P.S. I need $2000 by the end of September and I'm more than willing to accept donations *wink*.  More to come on that bull shit soon.  Or in a couple months.  I don't really know yet.


  1. Well the other downside is that it's not just the "regular" kids who are expected to all pass with flying colors. The special needs children (even those with no verbal or reasoning skills) are expected to meet their grade expectations. It's set up for failure and it's not right.

    The other thing- I know it's controversial, but I do believe in basing a teacher's pay based on student performance. I can think of 5 teachers in my high school years alone who couldn't give two shits less if we learned anything, and they were there collecting a paycheck. That? Isn't right. I don't care about tenure or how close to retirement you are- if your students aren't learning anything you shouldn't be getting raises. Period.

  2. So special needs children have to be proficient in the same stuff as 'regular' kids? That's ridiculous. My mom works in a special needs class and there is no way.

    And I completely agree with you on the pay. I've had my share of shitty teachers, too. If they hate students and can't teach worth a shit, they shouldn't be teaching. Another problem I've run into, are teachers that are teaching because they want to coach, not because they want to teach, because then all the athletes walk out with A's and the rest of the kids are screwed over.

  3. Ugh, Sara I'm feeling a whole new post coming on.