In my prior post (The “Green Line”) I discussed the entrenched position of a lot of the arguments about education and education reform these days. Here is one of my favorite arguments:
- Teacher: Your ideas have no basis in research, or the reality where I teach;
- Reform-y Type: You’re just for the status quo!
Really, how does the discussion recover from that point? The funny part is there are a lot of initiatives to change how we do education in this country now, that are an alternative to the vision that reform-y types have in their head. One of those places is Accomplished California Teachers. These issues get discussed regularly on their blog, but their biggest initiative has been to try to revamp the teacher evaluation system in our state (maybe your state needs to do this too?) to include student outcomes, but not performance on a once a year standardized test.
But, I fear. I fear that we’ve lost trust. I fear that we’ve so lost trust that even efforts like these, generated by teachers themselves, will not be heard by either side in this debate. The climate for any change has been poisoned by programs used as a weapon, rather than a means to do better. This effort will require all participants to have trust in the program. Teachers need to hear from leaders that they are the part of the solution, not the just the problem. We need the media to be responsible in their reporting, instead of jumping on bandwagons that may lead us to where no one wants to go. Once that happens, we can sit down at the table, roll up our sleeves and “get ‘er done”.
Other ACT Links:
http://accomplishedcaliforniateachers.ning.com – a Ning site – ACT main online interface w/ members
http://twitter.com/AcmpCA_Teachers – Twitter