How Bright is your Child's Teacher?

CarolMarch 5, 1999

Okay, I am not out to make enemies here, and I know that there are many wonderful teachers out there, both new and seasoned teachers.

I will tell you that I am scared for our nation's children. I work in a university and I am in contact with many students. The university I am affiliated with is a very highly rated school. For the most part it is an engineering and business school, liberal arts are secondary, but students are supposed to have good SAT's and grades to be accepted. For the most part the students are like other students; there are the good and the bad in every field. I see students from every field.

What concerns me is the quality of the students who are to become our next generation of teachers. I am appalled that the majority of students I see from the field of education seem to be scraped from the bottom of the barrel. For the most part they are unable to write a coherent letter, they can not spell and when I speak to them they seem to be the dullest most uninformed, ignorant students on campus.

It seems that if they want to teach third grade that they have mastered the third grade but not much else. I do not expect these people to understand quantum physics, or theorize on Shakespeare, but I really fear for our children. I know that there are wonderful teachers out there, I had a few, and I also had some horrible ones.

Is it the standards of our universities that are graduating such imbeciles!? This is not the only university I have worked for. I have seen this time and time again. I have wanted to make copies of the letters I receive from these students, many who have graduated and are working in the field, cross out the addresses and names and submit themto the local newspaper. I believe that the community would be as shocked and horrified as I am.

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As a long-time teacher, I share your concerns when I see the quality of student teachers. Most seem to really love children but that is just not enough. I am appalled by their inability to write, their poor speaking grammar and lack of vocabulary. And I don't think anyone reads any more. These are observations from eating lunch with them! I have not accepted a student teacher in years for a couple of reasons. A major one is that the university no longer offers a credit waiver; it gives a pass to the gym/exercise equipment! I don't need the course or the money, but my school sure could use something for my students in exchange for all the work teachers put in for this program. Also, I knew I was extremely lucky with my last 3 student teachers. They were intelligent, dynamic, well-read, and taught me some things about teaching writing. Others had duds and I can't waste my kids' time and I don't want to be the miserable sob who fails a student teacher.

    Bookmark   March 10, 1999 at 5:10PM
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Ofer Peleg

Another aspect of the problem is the teachers' mental strength;
A teacher, being the authority's direct representative and
as such has it's support... that teacher if he or she isn't mature enough, can sometimes harm kids...
Does anybody really care?

    Bookmark   March 18, 1999 at 5:33PM
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If you but look, you will find the same sorts of errors in letters from people in other professions besides teaching. I teach, and on the whole, teachers are well educated, and do a wonderful job. It would certainly help matters if people like you would lobby for higher pay for teachers so that better applicants would be interested in the profession. We are certainly underpaid for the work we do! Everytime we lobby for a raise, we are essentially refused, or, if we get a raise, we get days added to the school calendar. Engineers get paid much more than we do, and they are great in their field, but how well rounded are they? Teachers have to know a little bit about lots of things.
The best first grade teacher I ever knew, after years of teaching first grade, couldn't communicate with adults anymore, but she was one heck of a first grade teacher, and WOW did she ever turn her students on to learning.

    Bookmark   March 18, 1999 at 6:50PM
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my child's teacher is dumb

    Bookmark   March 18, 1999 at 7:21PM
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Ofer Peleg

Teaching children is one of the greatest privileges ever... Also, lots of teachers do some side jobs, which is OK,
as long as they do well in their main occupation.
But that, I'm afraid, isn't always the case...

    Bookmark   March 19, 1999 at 3:31PM
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I am having a problem with my daughter's teacher. She seems to be lacking in some academic areas and, is unable or unwilling to teach the children the required basics. I have talked to the other parents and they all think she's not teaching their kids anything either. It's like one of my daughter's classmates said, " It's DUMB teaching DUMBER". This woman loves the kids but, I feel that too many of our teachers are unqualified to teach.

    Bookmark   March 25, 1999 at 12:50PM
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Marg, I agree that there are students of all types who are not all "grammatically perfect". Being a college student currently, I have seen this first handed. Part of the problem is that many programs only require students to take one or two units of English in their first year. In these classes, they are taught the basics of University level English and then left to fend for themselves for their remaining years. I personally tripple-check my own papers for errors (I don't do this when posting, so please excuse any mistakes I might make) and realize that those errors that I do make shine negatively on my acedemic side. However, the life of a student is not always an easy one and I can understand how errors might slip through the cracks in a few letters. Sometimes when your priorities are elsewhere (eg. exams, essays, projects, reading endless chapters) the last thing on your mind is checking for errors in a letter that you just want to pop off so you can get back to the matters at hand. I am not an education student, however I do not think it is fair to judge all education students the same. There are good and bad students, just as there are good and bad teachers. Being a student tough stuff...I think that some people just forget what it was like for them in University. Personally, I'm dirt poor, my cupboards aren't exactly full, and I spend more time with my nose in a book than I do with my friends.

    Bookmark   March 25, 1999 at 8:46PM
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Sometimes it is not the teacher who is to blame. I am often appalled by what parents say by their actions. I am frequently the only parent or one of the few who shows up at important 'scholastic' events that the students have prepared long and hard for, such as a 'mock trial' at which the students and local attorneys prepared for a semester. Few other parents showed up for 'academic challenge' sessions which were televised--and my child was the alternate, not actively participating except once! Yet I was there every time cheering them on, despite working 60 hours a week. Same for the music festivals. Many of these same students are athletes, and the parents are always there to watch them play football. What is this telling our children about what is important in school?

    Bookmark   March 25, 1999 at 11:07PM
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Louise Alberta

I am a lab tech in a high school. Yesterday, a student teacher asked me "Are them dissecting microscopes?" Most of our students use better grammer than that.

    Bookmark   March 26, 1999 at 11:34AM
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Sometimes it is not the teacher who is at fault. Her hands are usually tied--and it is difficult to work in that position.... We are to teach the children grammar, but are not to correct it on a writiing assignment. Children come to us with virtually no social skills or manners, yet we are not to teach them any such thing because of possible violations of the parents' rights. Teachers also get stuck with the if-it-is-not-fun-we-don't-want-to-learn-it syndrome. I'm sorry to disillusion everyone, but sometimes life will not be fun. It also seems that more and more parents want to "get rid" of their children, and so send them to school before they are socially, emotionally, or mentally ready to go. It seems sometimes that it's more important for a parent to have a free "babysitter" than to make other arrangements for a child too immature to go to school. Thus we end up with often chaotic classrooms where children try to behave any way they deem suitable and for which we are not to correct them. When are parents going to accept their responsibility and raise their children to know the difference between right and wrong and to be"armed" with the basic social skills and manners? Perhaps then teachers will be able to produce a new generation of children who will not be considered "dumb" once in the real world. Many times the teachers spend more time parenting children in their classes than teaching. Teachers have to watch what they say and do every minute. Heaven forbid that a child be corrected because they said We seen a dog....we might damage their self-esteem. The child's parents might come at us full force accusing us of just that or more. When are "they" going to give the job of teaching back to the teachers and take it out of the parents' hands. We were trained and educated for our job--what training does the parent have for teaching if they are not in the field? For that matter, what training do many parents have for parenting? Many parents with no training in education want to tell the educational system what to do and how to do it; however, they would never be able to survive in a classroom today with the 20-30 of the children they raised. It is true, there are good and bad teachers. I just wish the system would let the good teachers do their jobs and quit complaining about how they do it..... Forgive me if I have offended any parents out there. I, too, am a parent, and I take my share of the responsibility.

My thoughts ramble, and for that I am sorry.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2000 at 5:47PM
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Your thoughts are not rambling, and they are so very accurate. It's easy to blame us, the teachers, for problems. I have high school students who have no social skills whatsoever! Their language matches their home language--and it's usually pretty rough.

I go to girls' basketball games, boys' junior varsity games, etc. NEVER are more than 5 parents present, never.
At open houses the largest number of parents I've ever had is 15. Out of 125-150 students I teach yearly, that's a pretty poor number.

It's very easy to complain about teachers not doing, and there are some teachers who shouldn't be teaching, I agree. On the whole though, most teachers are competent, very competent. I have a student teacher presently who is a dream. She's bright, creative, her students already love her, and she knows her field. I also teach with many young teachers, and on the whole, they are doing just as good a job as teachers have always done.

I've been cursed out, job threatened, etc. by parents and students to whom I was trying to teach something.
I think every parent in the world should have to substitute for a week. Attitudes would change. And, I thought this before I started teaching.
Let's take yesterday when a science teacher was absent. The high school kids pulled the emergency shower, threw things, one kid stuck things in his pocket. The sub was not a new one. It was mostly two bad kids in a class.
I have a student who hates school--BUT the judge says he must be in school EVERYDAY. The judge should come sub also.
Most of my students are wonderful, but the awful ones we have to deal with are horrible and sometimes we spend so much time controlling them that our good students DO suffer.
Schools have a difficult time anymore even expelling bad students. We have to suffer them in our classrooms.

    Bookmark   February 11, 2000 at 6:01AM
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Hear, Hear to the previous two posts. I am a primary grade teacher - k,1,2. I too have been cussed out many times by parents (mostly at the parent pick up circle and only once by the parent of one of MY students). I ask you, if a parent is willing to cuss out a teacher in front of his/her kids, what kind of an example is this setting? Certainly not one of respect for teachers. I'll admit that I know some teachers who should not be teaching, but that is the way it goes, there are people in other professions who should not be in their positions either. Please, please, please support your children's teachers. It makes all the difference in the world for your child's education. If there is a problem, discuss it with the teacher.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2000 at 2:02PM
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We have a Civility Policy in our school district. It includes permission for a teacher to refuse to be part of an abusive communication, recourse for that teacher, and even a form letter that will be sent to the abusive parent. If it is something more serious,such as threats, the law enforcement officials will be involved. Many school districts have copied our policy. Apparently we were the first in the nation to develop this policy at the request of one of our board members, and the media spread the word.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2000 at 5:03AM
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This is awful of me to say but some of the stupidest people I went to college with became elementary school teachers. I know women who had to take the CBest test 3-4 times before they could pass. And I know women who failed numerous classes in private schools but for whatever reason were able to graduate and are now teaching the youth of this nation. I agree that there are dumb people in every profession but teachers have such a profound influence that it seems very sad to me that we can't raise their salaries and attract more intelligent people.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2000 at 7:56PM
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Your post was very amusing, Carol. It was also full of grammatical and punctuation errors. A couple of the sentences did not make sense. You work at a university? I hope NOT as a teacher. Oh, by the way, yes, I am a teacher.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2000 at 11:17PM
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I think Daisy hit the nail right on the head.

I am a Canadian teacher. Our salaries are considered quite good. I don't have any colleagues who cannot spell or are linguistically challenged. I am not saying there are no lousy Canadian teachers, but since we are paid fairly well, there are lots of candidates, and school divisions do have the opportunity to pick the very best. (Some rural and remote areas may not have that large a candidate pool, though.)

It is sad though, that my husband (who does not hold a four year degree in his field as well as post graduate work towards a masters) is able to make nearly twice as much as I do (and with the same years of experience). He works with computers.

Right now our high schools are looking for QUALITY educators in fields like biology and physics, and computer science as well. It is said that in many divisions once two or three people retire who have taught these high school courses for years there may not be anyone qualified to take their places. Why? Well, even though we are well paid, the best and the brightest who graduate with knowledge (and credentials) in these areas can earn several times as much elsewhere than they can teaching.

I teach for many reasons, and most are not financial, but I do have a right to make a decent living (or at least to choose a field in which I have the opportunity to do so).

I must also admit that when I am being yelled at by an angry parent, reading a rude note, or being told to stop picking on a child (sadly, setting limits seems to be equated with picking on in many cases these days) I don't think I am being paid nearly enough. (In some cases, and working in some situations, a million dollars wouldn't be enough to compensate, but teachers still come in every day anyway.)

Just some thoughts... (And by the way, I do love my job, despite it's stresses and heartaches.)

    Bookmark   February 19, 2000 at 6:11AM
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Not only is my son's 4th grade teacher not the brightest light in the house. She doesn't even like children. My son wanted to know if she was just doing it just to have the summer off. Makes ya wonder!

However, in all his past grades he has been fortunate enough to have teacher's who only taught for the love of children and he has had some of the finest teachers there are.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2000 at 6:09PM
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The world is full of excellent teachers and I agree that the pay is not sufficient. But there are some doozies out there, like the teacher who glanced at my bloodied, muddied son who was hurt on the playground and said, "Hm. Guess you'll have to go call your mom." He wasn't able to make the call himself and luckily the secretary in the office had compassion and called for him. And the teacher in the store the other day who said to the clerk, "Oh them's not mine, them's is those guyses."

    Bookmark   March 9, 2000 at 10:19AM
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Most of my children's teachers have been okay to excellent. My son's current teacher is fabulous. He is doing things in second grade that amaze me. He is the youngest of my four children and there have been a few lemons along the way.
Whomever the teacher, I always speak positively about school and show respect to teachers. I am fortunate to live in a community where most parents teach their children to behave properly in school. I have noticed that it only takes one or two poorly behaved students in a classroom to destroy the quality of education for the rest of the class.
When a teacher has to be a full time behavior monitor for one or two, she or he does not have time to teach the others. Teachers have little recourse when this occurs.
If parents would unite and petition their school districts for alternative classrooms for disruptive children, if parents of children in a classroom disrupted would jointly remove their children from the class until the situation was resolved(funding for public schools is tied to attendance), we might see some changes.
As it stands, it is often the parent of the disruptive child who is complaining and demanding most.
Remember, just as you don't tell your boss how to run his business, teachers don't tell the principle or superintendant how the schools should be run. It is quite the reverse. Parents and taxpayers are the ones who have the right to demand changes in the way teaching and schools are administered. Think about it. Thanks, Jan

    Bookmark   March 30, 2000 at 4:04AM
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The problem is not the teachers as much as the parents. If you think there's a problem then do something about it instead of just sitting at a computer and complaining. Me? I'm starting an inner city school. Marva Collins is my hero!!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2000 at 5:27PM
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Amen Sue!!! Pardon me I am really tired (from grading) so this probably will make little to no sense.
I teach 6th grade and I am sooo tired! I am tired from the time I wake up until the last paper is graded at 11 pm.

Many things have to happen to improve teacher quality. The main thing is salaries. If salaries improved so would the quality of the teachers. You can not attract quality work without giving up some green. Also, the work environment HAS to change. Being cussed at, desks thrown at you, being verbally assaulted by parents and children, being required to take teacher self defense, and the overall work load burns out worthwhile teachers. Overload burns out any employee! I feel overloaded everyday!
Statistics state that most teachers leave the profession within their first five years. I have been teaching four and have started looking for another profession. The stress is just too much for highly qualified professionals to stay. Especially considering they could earn twice that in another line of work.
I am rambling. I have about 10 more papers to grade and then I am up and at it again tomorrow.
Think about that when you criticize another teacher.

    Bookmark   April 17, 2000 at 11:27PM
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I have to start by saying that I have had some fabulous teachers who made learning exciting and fun. As a result I did very well in school and graduated with two scholarships. My problem now is with my oldest child. I live in Ontario, Canada where we have JK(junior kindergarten) starting at age 4. My son is shy and was reluctant to go to school and his teacher has made it a very bad experience for him, so much so that he has told me nearly every day that he doesn't want to go. Several other parents have transferred their children out of the class because of the harsh and demeaning way she speaks to the children(On days that I volunteered I have been shocked at how she shamed a child and her negative attitude.) I should have done something when I came a few (5) minutes late to pick up my son(stuck at the bank, TOTALLY my fault) only to find him standing on the unfenced playground in the pouring rain TOTALLY alone (she is supposed to take them inside to wait for a parent) After a final displat of her insensitive and unprofessional manner last week, on my husbands' suggestion, I pulled him outof school and will homeschool for the rest of the year and transfer him to another school next year (She teaches senior kindergarten next year) It's such a shame that one teacher can ruin it for so many children. I don't claim to be able to handle 24 kids on my own, that's why I'm not a teacher. I'm hoping for a better experience next time around.
Thanks to all those great teachers out there who DO care,and are doing a great job, keep it up!!!

    Bookmark   April 30, 2000 at 6:18PM
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Yes, definitely teachers need better salaries, but the system of tenure has to go. What other job promises unending security simply for sticking it out for a given length of time? I think the tenure system keeps many bad teachers in schools, because there is no way to get rid of them.

    Bookmark   May 8, 2000 at 12:40PM
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After reading all of your comments I feel like I need to apologize for the parents of the world. I am always helping and listening to my son and his teachers on how to improve his growth. I try to find out what goes on in his school so I can be an involved parent. I work full time but take time off to be included. There has to be a way to get uncaring parents involved!!!!! I wish I knew how because it bothers me so. But it also bothers me that the schools don't try harder to get the parents involved. I believe the learning process (manners, writing, speech, etc) should start and continue at home. It is the parents responsibility to assist these teachers to get the most out of our children. I guess the word that comes to mind is TEAMWORK!! I don't know how I feel about the SOL's grading teachers but if it gets rid of the ones that need to go, it's hard to disagree.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2000 at 10:16PM
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me myself and i

not bright enough.

that should say it all.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2000 at 12:14AM
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I was my elementary school valedictorian.

I graduated in the top 10% of my high school class.

I received a 1460 on the SAT.

I graduated college summa cum laude.

I took teaching tests for Secondary English and Elementary Education, and passed both (ONE try each) with well above average scores.

I have been teaching 6th grade for five years now, and for the most part, my students do well.

Am I bright enough yet?

    Bookmark   July 9, 2001 at 2:49AM
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Well having two grown children and sending them to public schooling-I feel I've seen it all. I have seen teachers that were so brillant and those that were just Ok and of course those that were not very bright. Again having two grown children and one out of school I have heard the comments "You would not believe some of the people that are getting degrees in teaching!"

I believe teacher should be compensated for their abilities. I think my daughter is a great teacher, she made straight A's in her Master's education program and also has a degree in Biology, and was in a National Biology honor fraternity, and has a Minor degree in Chemistry. With the degree in Biology she has turned down a good job in testing water etc. She was awarded several awards by her professors in her teaching ability in the Master's program and was snatched up by the school where she was student teaching and make excellent on her score of teaching while- student teaching-Nominated as a best teacher in the county she is teaching in. She does teach at a school that has high scholatic scores and expects alot out of the teacher. She is even on the committee of hiring new teachers and interviews for positions in science. What I am trying to say is that there are good teacher out there. In her school there are other very bright teacher that have recieved awards-the principal is on top of things at that school.

Principals many times let teachers get tenured that shouldn't just because they don't want to upset the apple cart, or for other reasons I am not aware of. I have seen this.

I do think that tenure carries more weight than it should. What if the teacher just decided to teach for the first three years really well ,and after being tenured -sat back and did nothing, can you get rid of her or him???Around here it is next to impossible to get rid of a teacher unless the teacher has harmed a child in some way---teaching abilities -that doesn't seem to matter.

It took 4 principals 20 years to get rid of a teacher that came in half drunk every Monday morning and refused to teach!!! Now should that have went on and WOULD that have went on in other jobs. Some jobs-yes it would- Many jobs _NO WAY!!!

I just think that good teacher should be paid more, and good teacher that have been at a school for a long time even more . Those that don't teach or can't teach (Not having the ability or for whatever reasons) no matter if they have been at the school 6 months or 20 or more years-they should get the boot!!

    Bookmark   July 14, 2001 at 6:00PM
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I teach, have an above (quite far above, actually) average IQ, but I have to say that some of the best teachers I've ever known were people who themselves struggled in school. They're often much more patient, more understanding of a student who takes a little longer to grasp a concept--and often extremely creative in finding ways to capture and hold their students' interest. As a person who generally 'gets' things the first time around, I often find myself short of patience when I have to explain something 2, 3, 4 times to the same student--it's definitely something I've always had to work hard to control.

Yes, I see lots of kids who seem less than prepared for college and life in general, but I've also seen many of them rise to the challenge when they got out into the real world and found other people were depending upon them. Let's do our best to teach them well, then give them a chance.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2001 at 11:20AM
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I don't know if lobbying for higher pay would help with this situation. Now, don't get me wrong, teachers deserve more pay, but will increased wages attract smarter teachers, or will it attract people who will go into the profession for the wrong reason (i.e., money)?

Also, there should be less red tape when it becomes necessary to let go of an unusually incompetent teacher (like the half-drunk one mentioned above), to make room for the more competent, caring teachers

    Bookmark   August 18, 2001 at 2:57PM
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I have to agree with an earlier post that it isn't so much the teachers as the parents. As in any profession, there will always be some good employees and some bad ones. But you can always be a good parent and get involved in your child's learning. Parents need to instill a love of learning into their children. If a child has a poor teacher, then they will need to be self-motivated to learn, and that comes from the parents' teachings. We don't live in the house we want, go on the vacations, etc., so that my wife can be a stay-home mom. We make sacrifices so that she can always be there for our children. My mother did the same for me and I knew how to read before I went to kindergarden. My mother taught me.

I taught high school for three years and left because of the politics of the school system. But more frustrating than that was the lack of interest or support from the parents of the students who I tried so desparately to teach. And unfortunately, much of the time was spent disciplining and managing rather than pure teaching. There are certainly problems with the educational system, but these may never be resolved. Rather than complain about it, we need to do what is within our control -- be good parents.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2001 at 11:52AM
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I agreed with you guys about parents need to get more involved with their education. I have a 3 year old who I have be teaching at home. He is now able to read, and do addition very well. I teach him every day from 7 to 3 to prepare him for school. He has beng wanting to go to school for quiet some time. My husband and I took him to a preschool to see about enrolling him, and I was concern about how the principle responed to my son. She repeatly said boys was really trouble with behavior. Teachers aready have a seed in there head about kids, especially boys. We decided to wait to put him school and keep teaching him at home,because of lack of involment good kids sufer.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2002 at 11:00PM
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I taught for a long time, but I finally got out of it. It was the worst job I ever had, bar none! A classroom teacher is a social worker, psychiatrist, police officer, health official (oh, those lice searches!)drill sargent, paper pusher extraordinaire, political player and - oh yes, if time permits, you get to teach. On the plus side, some teachers do make it to the $50 k range for what amounts to about 8 months of work a year, with all the vacations and breaks. You take a lot of abuse, every day. You're on the front lines, believe me.

What is going to make this dismal situation better? Folks shouldn't be allowed to bear children until they pass a lot of parenting classes! And teachers shouldn't have tenure. Name any other job in which you work all day out of the range of supervision and a boss and you just about can't get fired unless you take off your clothes or show up drunk.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2002 at 1:29AM
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How hard is it to get a Dr. or Lawyer disbarred? Harder than getting a teacher fired. Try to get someone fired from any union job.

I don't know about the 8 month a year statement. I have official work dates of mid August to mid June. During the summer I am either taking a class or reading for the next year. During the school year I have less than four weeks of break. Most of those breaks are really for the convenience of the parents who want to travel. Of course they pull their kids out other times also which requires more work. I've had parents tell me that I could catch their students up after school when they return from their cruise!

The average teacher in the US works as many hours in 10 months as the average worker does in 12. We also average $400 a year out of our own pockets for classroom supplies.

I love to teach, but I don't do it for the money or the vacations. Many times I do it despite the parents. Most parents do care and support us, but the ones who don't cause so much stress our health suffers. Most teachers I know have had some stress related disorder during their careers.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2002 at 10:52AM
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I don't think a teacher has to have straight "A"'s in college. But the teacher should be required to do his or her job correctly , just like any other job. I too agree that tenure holds too much power. Even if the teacher does not teach what he or she should after tenure they still should be fired for doing such. There should be a certain cirriculum that the teachers should be held accountable for.
Also if helps if you have a principal that cares that the teacher in his or her school are doing a good job. Some care, some don't. Some take any complaints from parents about a teacher's teaching with a grain of salt, others go check it out and see if the complaint is true.

There are brillant, bright teachers that love their job. There are teachers that don't like their job and don't teach but hang on until retirement. Every parent knows these teachers. These same teacher get real offensive if questioned about how they are teaching your child. They assume they are the teacher, they have the degreein education, you are not a teacher you don't have a degree of any kind -or if you do have a degree it isn't in education, so what would you know? Their attitude is they are the teacher they know what they are doing (?)

Some of the most arrogant teacher I have encountered in years past are the worst teachers. But as any other job, you can put personality aside. A teacher should be judged on their merit and their work. Lazy of teachers that do not teach (I have seen a teacher that got at years end to page 30 of a 300 page Math book in Grammar school) These type teachers should be shown the door- and not able to teach at all.
Many times a principal will turn a deaf ear to a complaint that the teacher isn't doing his or her job, especially if the principal is very friendly with this particular teacher, other times the principal may just not want to do their job and get involved.

You can not tell always by the grades your child is making just how good the teacher is at teaching what he or she is suppose to . Straight A's from a teacher that is not teaching the material mean nothing. You must keep up with what the teaching is teaching.

Some of this information comes from being a parent.Some comes from knowing and talking to teachers that are friends in the teaching profession.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2002 at 3:12PM
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I truly appreciate teachers. Most of them but not all. Teachers should be like the rest of us. If you don't do your job well, you are history. At conferences, I asked our daughter's 3rd grade teacher who monitors the library books these children check out as they are tested at them. She blamed the librarian. When I asked about the Weekly Reader having to be done at home all the time, she blamed the teacher across the hall because she taught that subject. Got to the point she wouldn't even look at me. So, I ended up telling her what I expected out of her and our child. It helped my daughters grades and the second conference went much better. I don't know exactly who decides what and how the three Rs are taught, but they must be the people who did not like school or do well. Cause it stinks! Now they are starting to teach story problems in math instead of the basics... come on - every one needs to learn the basics. And we wonder why these kids struggle? Because of what is expected of our 3rd grader and how much the teacher gets done at school, my husband spends 1-2 hours a night with our daughter doing school work. Uncalled for at that age. Don't blame all parents. I don't blame all teachers. Our special needs son has had some VERY wonderful teachers. I will quit while I am ahead. Thank you.

    Bookmark   February 22, 2002 at 9:55PM
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Let me start by saying my son's teacher is WONDERFUL. We live in the 2nd largest district in Ohio which has a HORRIBLE record, but our local elementary is great. His teacher (1st grade) is a very smart lady who got fed up with the business world and went back to get a teaching degree in her 40's, so she truely CARES about teaching.

That being said, I take my 2 oldest sons to swimming lessons at the YMCA on Saturdays. The parents usually sit on the bleachers to watch, and some chat. There are 2 women that carry on like teenagers, use the worst grammer I've heard in ages, are barely intelligble, etc. I found out a few weeks ago that they are BOTH teachers in the city school district!!!! They both teach FAR away from our neighborhood, but I was outraged on behalf of the kids that they ARE teaching.

    Bookmark   February 25, 2002 at 9:30AM
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I am a former teacher. All of my children are grown. My youngest child is in college on full scholarship. My middle daughter is a lawyer. My older daughter is a high school chemistry teacher. My wife is a high school teacher.
It is teamwork. If your child is having problems in school, you should know about it and be trying to find the solution to the problem. Get involved with the school. Get involved with your child's activities at school. Good parents and good teachers help develop good students who in turn make good schools. It takes all working for the good of the students.
Everyone is a teacher. So we should all be improving daily to be better citizens and setting the proper example for others to follow.
We seem to live in a world with too many double standards. We say one thing and do another too much. (Like it is okay for me but wrong for you.) Too many times we want to blame others when the blame should be absorbed. Clean up around your own door first then you can clean up around someone else's door.
My greatest concern for mankind is our behavior. We need to be more loving, caring, concern, God fearing, obedient and faithful people to God and to each other. Show a little more kindness put a little more love in your hearts. Seek Jesus and seek to obey Him.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2002 at 7:59PM
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If there are some bad apples(teachers) at a school it will not matter how much you participate these teachers are not going to change.

But it is true that you can find out what's going on more it you participate. (Also an advantage use to be-and may very well be today in some instances- that if you get close enough to the principal, he OR she may fix it where your child has only the very best teachers)
All of that aside participating in her child's school is very good and many times helps you and your teacher communicate well. Many times-but not always.

At some schools you have -some teachers that some can't teach at all!(the truth at "some schools", not saying all) some teacher are mediocre
-while others are -simply Great!!!

There are other schools that seem to have only mediocre at the best in thier school...while there is the case of the school that has only exceptional teachers!

I say all this having a daughter that had a high grade point average in college and a degree in Biology,Chemistry and Education.

Schools vary! They vary from city to city, county to county. Some schools that All the teachers are good at are because they are selected by the school and parents. Also Having two sister-in-laws that are teachers in grammar school I can say this. Their children were NEVER given any bad teachers but only the best teachers the school they teach at has to offer and are know as the best teachers.
This is a known fact among teachers, and they admit it.(Well my 2 sister-in-laws that do not live close by admit it :o)Teachers many time and most times get their pick of their childrens teacher.
Unless they are fortunate to teach at a school where all the teacher are up to par.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2002 at 8:58PM
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I would hate to say that my childs teacher is DUMB or STUPID because htose are two words that I hate to hear people use when referring to my spoecial education children....However, I will tell you that my daughter was given to assignment of doing a visual report on the state of her choice. She wanted to do DC, since my best friend lives there and could do an interview....Her teachers response was, "You can't do that beacuse it is part of Maryland". Last time I checked a map, Washington DC was it's own territory.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2002 at 1:47PM
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Washington DC is an interesting city. I visited there a couple of years ago. You could still help your child do the report for fun. An interesting site:

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   April 29, 2002 at 2:31PM
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Sounds like you child's teacher is pretty ignorant. It is weird, but the people who I've met who think that DC is part of MD are all from the East Coast - maybe being near it makes you assume that for some reason.

If I had to do a report on a state, I would do DC too. It is such a weird city, but beautiful.

Here is a link that might be useful: taxation without representation

    Bookmark   April 29, 2002 at 3:38PM
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