Monday, September 27, 2010

Town Hall Teachers: What a bunch of cuties!!

Gosh darn it those teachers are cute!  Just look at them lining up at the microphone for a chance to speak.
Golly, we could be here all week if we gave all these teachers the chance explain their work to the rest of the nation.
Hey.....there's an idea.  How about an Education Nation that features educators? Clearly they can hold their own on national television.  And just as Brian Williams said (several times) they could talk all week.
But the microphone will be handed off to Very Important People who have the REAL answers to the problem of education in America. None of whom have walked the talk they are selling.
Lucky for us, they will probably provide some real simple, business-like solution that will wipe away all the problems in a single pass.
Whew.  We gotta get this problem resolved in between corporate messages or we might lose our audience.
I wonder how many who tuned in (did anyone watch this program besides educators?) were surprised to find that the teachers who spoke -- and those who fruitlessly hammered away on the online chat only to find their missive disappear into cyberspace-- were articulate, thoughtful, and controlled rather than raging, slobbering idiots.
If you've read newsmagazines or watched pop t.v. lately, I don't know how you could imagine anything else.
In just the few minutes provided (hurry up or get a blog), each teacher was able to provide a reasoned argument about the problems of holding teachers accountable for test scores, how standardized testing cheats our students out of a meaningful education, why teachers need tenure so they can continue to advocate for children without fear of dismissal, the crushing burden of poverty in this country, the need for equal access to great educators, supplies, and resources, and a plea to the media to stop sending impoverished children the continual message of failure.
Yay teachers! You made me proud.
Too bad we won't be permitted to explore each of the issues named in a deep, meaningful conversation.
And for those who argued that we must teach HARDER (Eat, breathe, sleep teaching?  Is anyone supposed to have a family, home, or good health?) or that tenure is unnecessary (Sorry kids, you only showed your naivete.  Clearly you have never been afraid to speak up and risk losing your job, your house, your livelihood.) that view of teaching in America is unsustainable.
By Friday, these teachers will be long forgotten.
But by Tuesday, I predict the Sleeping Giant will have awakened.
What I heard Sunday afternoon were committed adults largely speaking with one voice: Education needs to be re-formed and WE are the ones who want to lead that reform.  The kids and the teachers were victimized by the last reform.  We can't afford to let that happen again.

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