Monday, November 16, 2009

Mary's Rant

This, from my friend Mary, one of the best English teachers I know. It expresses so well how frustrating it is to care about kids so much and work so hard to educate them in the fact of the stubborn stupidity of policy-makers and, alas, some citizens, too, who persist in denying teachers the resources they need to get the job done.

"I have one of the dept. document cameras, but the projector and laptop I have checked out is from the IMC with their cart and my own speakers. I use it at least once a week; the document camera not as much because it's such a pain to rehook it all up.

"21st century classrooms? I've been ready for the last three years; even the soldiers I had as guest speakers today were a bit frustrated with the system that Sara Berghoff, my husband, Laura Phillips, and I have jerry-rigged together.

"Thankfully, I assured the soldier boys (and they agreed wholeheartedly!) our tax dollars pay for excellent military equipment, food and clothing -- just not for technology for our schools. (and ditto to Sen. Lugar's aide since the laptop kept "freezing" on the DVD she brought to show, and she finally scrapped it and ad-libbed the rest. She can take THAT impressive bit back to the senator, and maybe he can talk with our wonderful, new state supt. who must have left his heart in San Francisco or "our man Mitch," aka "the Blade," or that impressive roundtable of experts when they want to pay us based on test scores and continue to cut funding for schools, or even our newest boss who will solve all matters of education on the federal level with a continuation of "No Child Left Behind, No Child Moves Ahead.")

"And, if you live in [our township] and didn't get out and vote for the recent referendum as well as push it to your neighbors, what a shame.

"I wonder how many sharp, new colleagues of mine (who are now friends, too)will now get riffed this spring?

"Grrrr....a frustrating day, in more ways than one, even though spending the day with active-duty soldiers and someone in public service trying to make a difference as we all attempt to help teach the "future leaders of tomorrow " (YIKES!) how to appreciate what we have in America is usually a "best day" of the year for me. And, truly, it was, despite my 10 p.m. rant. :)

"I'm still smilin' and will be back to "mold minds" manana!


"P.S. Oh, wait. Sorry. You asked for only positive replies, and I just realized mine probably wasn't. Dang.

"P.P.S. What DID you ask? Oh, yeah. NO, I don't have a department projector."