Open Court?

I think we are on our way to Open Court. The last staff meeting allowed us 10 minutes to discuss the reworking of our entire arts program. Ten minutes. Of course this was after we were again treated to an explanation of the intervention system that throws the least able under the proverbial bus.

Our school is a most depressing place, and our leader is not suffering from deer-in-the-headlights. Our leader, who has yet to lead, was hired to do the deeds--get rid of teachers who don't fall in line, de-fund the arts program, and simply prove that with change must (apparently) come chaos.

I am going to do everything I can to find another job--not another teaching job, just another job. The only reward teachers get are the thanks from kids and parents. We get no money, autonomy, trust, time, support, materials, assistance, interventions for needy students, GATE for our brightest students, or power to teach. We get nothing but grief. What a fucking drag teaching is these days.

And when we teachers talk about our chosen field, we are pretty much on the same page about so many things; all the creativity has been replaced by "scientifically based" or "research based" curricular materials. Let me say that there hasn't been much new in education for a while. Heck, when I was young we went to whole language, only to find that it was stupid (which we already knew). Every pile of new curricular materials makes me visualize infrastructure left in disrepair. When I am told of a new curriculum that promises to close the achievement gap, I just wait a few months, or a couple years, and the study is debunked.

Teaching is not a science. It is an art, and I suggest it is an art that cannot be learned easily. Some of us are naturals, others are not. Our principal is not a natural. She is an insufferable, halitosis laden, big word using (loquacious? no, that's not it...pompous!), water carrying tool of the political zeitgeist which is intent on demonizing teachers and schools, sciencifying pedagogy (more of a philosphy than a science, no?), and promising things she has no business promising. What a tool!

Summer is coming, I can't afford to do anything, so I guess I'll look for a job. I hope to be able to give notice at my school the day classes begin, out of spite.

And to those of you who took my advice and sent a letter to your child's teacher telling them how great they are, thank you. It is the only tangible bonus we ever get, and those letters can be useful when principals don't like you!

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