More Thoughts on Finding Our Way Off the Plateau

So the other day I posted a little rant… I have continued to think about my frustrations and have talked with others at school as well as read the comments left by others, and I am feeling a little better about things.  Nothing has really been “solved” but I think I have come to terms with the root of my frustration… the politics of public education.

As I said in my rant, I know my teachers are working hard and I know they feel pulled in too many directions… let’s face it – we ask a lot of them.  I guess where my frustration arises is that because of everything that is pushed upon them by NCLB, TAKS testing and state standards, district curriculum and benchmark testing, AP testing, SAT and PSAT preparation, there is little to no time to focus on the things that really matter (or at least I think really matter) like making the curriculum relevant, teaching the students to think critically and creatively, building personal relationships with the students, teaching skills students will need in the “real-world,” and, yes, effectively integrating technology.

It is enough to make the teachers and students feel defeated and give up, and unfortunately some of them do and we lose some outstanding teachers and students with potential, but fortunately, the rest of us hang in there and do the best we can hoping it will make a difference to someone.

Explore posts in the same categories: Academy, Rant, reflection

2 Comments on “More Thoughts on Finding Our Way Off the Plateau”

  1. John K. Brown Says:

    Hi Angela,

    I think that you and your colleagues should understand that being at a “plateau” is an achievement. You have been fighting a tidal wave of testmania and you are still in there doing great things. My congratulations to you and the staff of The Academy.

    The only strategy that I can offer you is to toot your horn as often and as loudly as you can. Celebrate every effective innovative teaching accomplishment and student accomplishment (like Matt’s video) and spread the word. Share with central administration. Share with parents. Share with the press. It’s the only way to overcome the inertia that plagues educators. As I have reflected on my own career, my failure to toot that horn more is my biggest regret.

    Everyone needs to hang in there! It’s worth the struggle.

    One more thing. Have as much fun as you can while you are doing it!


  2. S. Seifipour Says:

    I think you’ve hit the nail right on the head. Good job, Chief.

    Hope you’re feeling more settled with the whole thing.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

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