A serious of tweets with Arthur Goldstein, Tim Farley and Randi Weingarten on the state of teaching in New York today:
@rweingarten @JudithMalys #CommonCore is a big part of why they don't feel respected. Teacher autonomy is gone in this country.— Tim Farley (@tfarley1969) June 28, 2015
@TeacherArthurG @tfarley1969 @rweingarten @JudithMalys Top-down imposed curriculum comes w/ it in many schools.— rbe (@perdidostschool) June 29, 2015
@TeacherArthurG @tfarley1969 @rweingarten @JudithMalys Coupled w/ constant Danielson eval, like Lucy on assembly line.— rbe (@perdidostschool) June 29, 2015
@TeacherArthurG @tfarley1969 @rweingarten @JudithMalys Or the Little Tramp in Modern Times - https://t.co/IqThFflvm9— rbe (@perdidostschool) June 29, 2015
Truth is, teaching in many New York schools these days is EXACTLY like the Little Tramp on the assembly line in Modern Times, especially when the EngageNY curriculum is used:
Close read incomprehensible piece, ask text-based questions about excerpt, close read same incomprehensible piece (sometimes same incomprehensible excerpt!), ask text-based questions about it, repeat ad nauseam until final assessment that tests retention of said material.
Have a lesson plan printed out with EVERY step, EVERY activity timed to the second, EVERY question asked of students with expected (and necessary) responses under them, EVERY activity ending in an assessment, EVERY do now activity text-based and "rigorous" (drill-and-kill starts from the very beginning of class and goes right to the end) - this is the daily experience of many teachers in New York's schools.
And God help you if you're slated for a Danielson drive-by observation on the day when you decide to deviate from the above assembly line teaching - you're almost guaranteed a "developing" or "ineffective" evaluation for the lesson in many schools.
Randi Weingarten says teachers feel disrespected and need to be respected?
Respect starts and ends with the autonomy to write curriculum, teach that curriculum as one sees fit, assess students as one sees fit, have the freedom to deviate from teaching methods and lesson plans imposed from above, and not be forced to teach from a lesson plan so completely controlled and rote that it sucks the life and soul out of the learning and the classroom.
Alas, Randi Weingarten and union leaders, through their collaboration with education reformers, have brought us the current assembly line teaching mess.
Randi Weingarten thinks teachers need to be respected?
Great - she should start respecting teachers herself by ceasing to "collaborate" with reformers on reforms that strip teachers of autonomy, creativity, and professionalism.
End the assembly line teaching and evaluations.