I love my son.
He is a high school senior about to decide what college to attend. One of his criteria is which school to which he’s been accepted has the best program to prepare him for his chosen professional goal.
I very much want my son to be happy in his work because if he is it will not seem like work.
He wants to be a high school English teacher.
I am trying very hard to talk him out of it.
My son loves to read and read at a high school level in fifth grade.
His current English teacher has him co-teaching a couple of lessons in the class. No other student is doing that.
Another of his HS English teachers told my wife and me “the greatest gift I could give my profession would be for your son to become an English teacher.”
Heady stuff, indeed.
My son could possibly be a very good English teacher. That is why I am trying to talk him out of it.
These days, very good is not good enough.
That’s the illogic of the new teacher assessment deal that NY Governor Cuomo pushed for and that the spineless NYSUT (NY State United Teachers) agreed to. Under this plan a teacher rated excellent by his principal and by other local teacher assessments would be rated as ineffective if his students did not show growth on the one day state tests are administered, even though those tests are only supposed to be 40% of the teacher’s rating.
How are we supposed to teach math when our governor and the state teacher union agree that 40% of X is larger than 60% of X?
No matter what else the teacher does, no matter how good he is on the other 179 days of the school year, he cannot be rated as anything other than ineffective if the test scores don’t go up enough. If that happens two years in a row he can be fired, even if he has tenure.
Indicted murderers are presumed innocent until judged guilty by a jury of their peers.
Tenured teachers are presumed ineffective, despite acquittal by their administrators.
How can I let my son become a teacher under a system that is as illogical and as unfair as the one his father will be working under starting next year?
Oh, wait. I’m a librarian. I don’t have students whose test scores can be compared year-to-year. No matter. The school’s total overall test scores will affect my job rating, whether or not most or any of the students come into the library and whether or not I have any influence on their performance on those one day exams.
More logic. Impressive.
Kid, I love you.
Become a mortician, a lawyer, a barber, or an accountant.
Pick rags for a living.
Just don’t become a teacher.
It just isn’t a good job anymore.