Thursday, February 05, 2009

Reality and Obama

"I found this deficit when I showed up," President Obama said tonight. He's struggling to convince the American public that his efforts are necessary, that 800 billion to 1 trillion dollars is necessary to stimulate this economy.
Here's what bothers me. Why can't I get away with such a statement. I mean, if I as a teacher were to allow my students who read at the third grade level to continue to flounder even while throwing unproven methods at them, would the public accept that as acceptable? No.
We have to fix problems. Those students reading at the third grade level have to be fixed, by me, before they take the state exam.


At 7:31 PM , Blogger Amerloc said...

I wonder if there's any way to identify, or at least differentiate, the surreal world(s) in which teachers operate from the world(s)in which politicians operate.

I'm not terribly optimistic that anyone will put any energy into the effort. It'd be nice, though, if someone did (other than me - I recognize my own distractions).

At 2:50 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the whole point Obama was trying to make is that he's not getting away with it. Just like you, he thinks he should be getting more slack, particularly from people who gave him the deficit in the first place.

I think you and he are on the same page, and are getting roughly similar treatment (although I guess I don't know exactly what the individual accountability rules are in your schools.)

At 4:03 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, the public seems to have no trouble with the idea of throwing unproven methods at the problems our students present as they come through the classroom door. There is no proof that the methods imposed by Joel Klein have any validity--but the NYC school system gets awards. Michelle Rhee's bully methods have no proof of effectiveness behind them and she gets the cover of the news magazines. In fact, the public clamors for the unproven method of using test results as an accountability measure in the face of ample proof that you can't fatten the pig by weighing it. There is no proof that the reading program you are to use this semester will work with you presenting it to these particular children, but I don't hear any public outcry against it. Teachers get into far more trouble for using the tried and true than they do for embracing the untried and patently untrue.


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