Right now the education system feels like a mess that is bigger than any of us could handle. My father asked me what are the 3 things needed to change in order for the education system in America to improve (my father always thinks in 3’s). I had a hard time limiting myself to only picking three things that need to change. I believe there are so many intricacies to a public educational system which employs both elements of federal and local money allowing for another confusing issues to be thrown in the mix.
The number 1 fix I would make to become effective immediately? Get rid of teacher tenure.
There, I said it.
Get rid of tenure. The whole issue of tenure irritates me to a degree that I cannot even name.
Teachers repeatedly demand for the pay and respect of those in the private sector. Well, if we want that sort of reward, then I feel like we have to earn it. How fair is it that teachers work for 3 years and then has job security for the rest of their careers? In what other profession does that happen??
Joel could get a call any day informing him he would no longer have a job. He hasn’t gotten that call and I assume he won’t. Why? Because he works his ass off. He EARNS his pay. Amazing concept.
I’m not by any means suggesting that teachers don’t all earn their pay; I sure believe I earn every penny. But I have grave issues with the fact that there are teachers at my school who don’t do a small percentage of what all I do and yet they have a job next year – guaranteed.
There are teachers at my school who scream at the students, telling them to read the chapter and answer the questions – but don’t ask her any questions. There are teachers (and not gym teachers) who have such little respect for their job that they think it’s appropriate to wear ill-fitting sweatpants and t-shirts. Some teachers feel that it’s perfectly acceptable to show videos every other day – videos that don’t have a flippin’ thing to do with school/education. There are teachers who hang on in the halls after the bell rings and chats with co-workers, ignoring the restless students in their classrooms. There are teachers who are lazy and refuse to modify their curriculum to reflect the change in technology.
All of those teachers have tenure.
Meanwhile, there are the rest of us, who work hard every day because we know that we could get cut at the end of May. Now that the budget issues are becoming rampant, teacher jobs are scarce. We dress up every day, think of and develop new innovative activities for our curriculum, and find ways for students to be actively involved in their education. And yet, WE are on the chopping block.
I couldn’t sleep last night due to my brain constantly running over all the injustices in the system. You say there are in justices everywhere? You’re right, but I bet you have better job security as a new employee than I’ll have for the next 3 years. I understand why teachers are on a lower pay scale. How can you justify paying someone an inflated salary when you can NEVER fire them?? (Yes, you could fire them but it takes YEARS and it is terribly difficult to get around the union laws to fire a tenured teacher).
Please don’t think that I am naive enough to believe every tenured teacher is a slacker and every new teacher is incredible.
It’s no secret – jobs will be cut. We will more than likely be losing a teaching unit in every department. I am the only untenured teacher in my department and yet I (the one with the 90% pass rate for the graduation exam – not that I totally agree with test scores but it sure makes me look good, the one who has triple the enrollment for my AP class next year) have the grave possibility of losing my job.
All because I am new.
I understand why students are discouraged to be teachers. How could they ever succeed in their profession if they can’t hold a job for longer than a year?