It’s been an eye opener because I’ve had the opportunity to spend time with middle and high public school teachers this week. I am shocked and dismayed with the pressures and lack of support these teachers receive while trying to educate America’s youth.One wonderful lady I have met is expected to teach several computing courses with very little resources. They are providing no textbooks, no training and yet she is expected to walk into the high school this year and teach concepts like programming using Flash and design in Photoshop.
Another was telling me about the thirty-five students she will have in her classroom. Thirty-five! If a teacher is absent, classes are combined and students sit on the floor.I am especially appalled by the amount of negative parental influence allowed. Parents of lackadaisical students complain to administration and teachers have been told not to fail them or to change their grades. In some cases, teachers have seen changes to their grade books. Accountability and consequences are out the window.
Finally, the budget cuts are really hurting the teachers personally. One lost his job days before the workshop started. Others say they are dealing with furlough days and major budgetary cuts for supplies and resources. Some districts have implemented health plans now that require teachers to demonstrate health through weight and activity or pay high premiums.
I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to homeschool my boys, and, yet, I am frightened by the trends in America’s education. Our schools are filled with kids needing a strong education, and teachers are being crippled by the administration and the government.
Why would people choose teaching these days when they have no support, low incomes, and ridiculous expectations set for them? America is at a crossroads, and if we don’t invest in teachers and our youth – the America we know and love will be a thing of the past as we watch the rest of the world pass us right by.