Thursday, December 06, 2012

Where Are We Heading?

It’s a tough year to be a teacher. People have little faith in us. I know this because this year we’ll no longer be able to grade Regents exams our students take.

Apparently, because know the kids and want them to pass, we can’t be trusted to grade them fairly. That is bias. Better to ship the tests off to total strangers who’ve never seen or met them. Clearly they can better judge and interpret their work than those of us who see it every day of our lives.
Maybe we should take this to the next stage and forbid parents from caring for their children. After all, parents are biased too, always wanting the best for their kids. That's just like teachers, so how can they be trusted?
The only thing that can be trusted, apparently, are standardized tests. And of course, that's what we’re talking about. We can’t write the tests ourselves because the Regents in Albany know much better than we do what our students need. Again, this is because they’ve never met them and don’t know them at all. Who better to judge our children?
The great minds that came up with these innovative systems of rating kids are now turning their attention to rating their teachers. Likely they’ve determined from the local tabloids that there is a plague of bad teachers, like zombies in our midst, and that this scourge must be eradicated at whatever cost. Bad teachers walk among us, teaching children wasteful literature, art and music rather than vital bus schedules, bar graphs, or how to fold the towels at Walmart.
The only way to put a stake through the heart of these monsters, apparently, is through increased use of standardized tests. If kids blacken the right circles, the teachers are good. If they blacken the wrong circles, the teachers are bad. How do you take a bad thing and make it better?
Evidently, the only way teachers will learn anything is if you threaten to fire them for said circles. That way, teachers will really know what to do. They could, perhaps, invest heavily in erasers.

Alternatively, they could teach to the test. I’ve taught to the test, and I’d surely do it again if someone put a gun to my head. Kids hate it (and so do I) when I do that, but they learn how to pass the test. 

At least that way, a lot of teachers won’t have to fold towels at Walmart. 

Not yet, anyway.
blog comments powered by Disqus