This week was full of many hard lessons. One of those has to do with this blog. The commentary on my post about getting pink slipped by my district while they were simultaneously attempting to bring in TFA interns, started to devolve to a level I would rather not see. While there were many contributors to this problem, I should have had a better handle on the comment moderation. I do have a comment policy, which says that people should not attack others, and that comments will be closed on a topic if they cease to be productive. Some commenters started to impart motives to another, condescension, that got the discussion onto a more personal track that was not at all productive. I had to pull comments that had been posted, put the blog on full moderation mode, and close comments on that post.
My take, as someone in the middle of this mess in real life, everyone is pretty stressed out and lots of us are going into bunker mode. In off-line conversations with TFAers they felt the work they do is being personally attacked. I want to make clear, my stand on this was not about all members, or any one member, but rather the system. We’ve agreed to disagree on TFA as a solution.
I know from talking to tenured/experienced teachers like myself, we feel our work is being discarded, and we’re being painted too broadly as not fixing failures that are more of society’s responsibility, rather than resting wholly at the schoolroom door. It’s been a pretty crazy week, that I will not bore you with the petty details of some of the many conflicts that have come up, but my conclusion is that everyone is pretty edgy, including myself.
As this unwinds, I will likely be blogging about topics of controversy. In addition, I’m cross-posting at FaceBook, and getting a local following now, and the local teacher crowd is pretty agitated these days. I expect there will be the chance that this may happen in the future. My goal is to do my best to keep the dialogue civil. I’m asking for my readers help in doing this. I have put my blog back to a moderation scheme that will automatically approve comments from people who have already had an approved comment. Comments will continue to be closed on the pink slip post.
Photo Credit: Mind Your Manners on Flickr photosharing