Commenters on the AJC Get Schooled blog had a range of reactions to the question, whether the voices of teachers have been heard in the contentious debate on how best to remake American schools. In many notable school transformations, teachers were pivotal factors in designing changes. Are we giving enough attention to teachers and seeking their input in Georgia? Here is a sampling of comments:
Deborah: It would be great if bad teachers could be identified and fired. In that case, teachers are too much like physicians. Other doctors know who the bad, dangerous doctors are, but they would never call them out and never testify against them, even if they kill someone. Teachers know who the bad ones are.
Astro: Teachers don’t want a voice. They want a veto.
Charles: This has been the problem for way too long. No one is asking teachers what they think is best. Too many administrators have never taught a day in their lives, and this has been since education turned into the business model of education. Since children are not commodities, the business model is not working and will not work. We need an education model where teachers are the experts.
Bubba: Aren’t the vast, vast majority of education administrators teachers who got promoted, have an undergraduate degree in education, and typically have obtained a master’s in education or education administration? Perhaps turning things over to the teachers isn’t such a good idea.
Retired: If you don’t like the way “government schools” are run, work to change the people running them. If you don’t like the laws that the “government schools” have to operate under, work to get them changed. Stop blaming “liberal, unionized teachers and educrats” and work for positive change. I am now retired, and I am working very hard to effect as much positive change as I can. I am far more conservative than the current Republican Party. The majority of practicing educators that I know are equally conservative. No one I worked with thinks Race to the Top is a good idea. Almost everyone I worked with thinks the federal government should be out of education completely, and that the federal Department of Education should be immediately abolished. And yes, I do know some liberal educators, but in my neck of the woods, the majority are conservative to very conservative.
Watsu: Well, it is about time. You want a better education, then listen to the teachers who teach classes in school. Stop calling them names and blaming them for everything the politicians do and say. Get the politicians out of education, and our kids will learn what they need to learn, and just maybe, teachers will stay in education instead of looking for a saner profession.
Decatur: What about the charter systems in Georgia? Teachers and parents in those systems are supposed to be involved in local school governance. Happening in name only? Meaningless school leadership team meetings without any true responsibility and authority? Principals and administrators won’t give up local school control? Well, revoke the system charters, then.
Colonel: I agree 100 percent on teachers taking responsibility for the profession. In my experience, it’s only the bad teachers who don’t do so.
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White House officials, asserting that the HealthCare.gov website is largely fixed, are under mounting pressure from Democrats and close allies to hold senior-level people accountable for the botched rollout of President Barack Obama’s signature domestic achievement and to determine who should be fired.