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Re: [teacherartexchange] Classes Dropped

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From: Patricia Knott (pknott_at_TeacherArtExchange)
Date: Tue May 24 2005 - 20:48:16 PDT


I think what is driving policies is not based on so sound reason and
thinking. Policies makers, far removed from the realities, scare the
"Peter Principle" folk into choices based on monies promised but far
from realized. Administrators and boards cow tow to the threats of
loosing money that they don't get in the first place. We, in the
trenches , all know that the demands of NCLB are unreasonable, often
ridiculous.
Who is to blame? We are.
All my efforts to express my concerns to state legislators about local
laws are met with little regard. Because you know what? Teachers
don't vote. They don't care about my vote-- my teacher voice is not
significant. I don't know if this is just my state or national, but in
my state, where we are facing issues of referendum and local vote on
school budgets-- TEACHERS are not voting.
Last week I voted for school board members . I went late to vote and I
was number 125 to vote and I bet the other 124 before me where people
wanting to control my school budget.
We can all sit back and complain and moan about cuts and what is
relevant or not, but unless you get out there and deal with these
people making the ultimate decisions-- local-state-national- then
there ain't no getting around laws like NCLB.
Although I believe my most important job is in the classroom, I can't
ignore the forces -- forces that I think are unsound and ignorant --
are driving what is happening in my classroom.
My school board voted against what this state is trying to initiate
that will only be a disaster for programs like art and music. I can
only feel good that I voted for those members brave enough to say NO.

There is absolutely no way to achieve the expectations of NCLB and it
does not take a rocket scientist to see it. In the mean time, until
wiser minds prevail, we will see more and more diminishing of valuable
programs
  and more and more unproven alternatives and profiteers for the
private. I really don't know what the expectation of NCLB is
        but we elected this administration
        you get what you vote for or don't vote for

and this is my rant, Woody

On May 24, 2005, at 5:00 PM, Woody Duncan wrote:

> In an e-mail from a teacher at my old Middle School, I found
> out that all shop and Home Ec classes will be dropped. The
> shop teacher retired so it was easy to faze out. Apparently
> our school had the last shop class in the district. The
> Home Ec was dropped to provide more math. Math is the one
> area that has been a problem with test results. Art and
> Music classes are safe for now, but for how long is the
> question. The school serves a low income population. There
> are not that many college bound kids. There are lots of
> good solid jobs out there in the construction trades. I know
> because my son makes four times what a teacher makes. I
> believe we are making a big mistake focusing on test scores
> in just reading and math. In a few years NCLB will expect
> 100 % of our students to be proficient in reading and
> math. An excellent but very unrealistic goal. They instead
> should call it NSLO (No School Left Open). Any comments
> on my ranting.
> Woody

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