About Me

I am a second-career teacher. In my other life, I crunched numbers as an accountant. Probably would have made a great math teacher had the thought occurred to me. No matter, I'm where I'm supposed to be; teaching third grade. Before that, 2nd grade and before that kindergarten. I have 2 grown daughters, 2 poodles, and 1 hubby. I live and work on Long Island.

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Immeasurable


As many of us are painfully aware, Governor Andrew Cuomo has initiated a vendetta against New York’s public education system and us teachers. Facing threats of termination should we fall below his ludicrous system of linking 50% of our students’ test scores to our evaluations, many of us are attending rallies, participating in Opt-Out movements and letter writing campaigns to effect change.

In the meantime, I have invited the governor into my classroom to witness the everyday teaching and learning that can’t be measured by a test score. He has not responded to my invitation. In fact, I understand he has not visited any public school classroom in our state EVER.

I say this to the governor…..MEASURE THIS:

ð    Hours spent talking to parents about the emotional health of their children and how it affects their learning
ð    Conferences with parents in preparation of report grades that fall below grade level expectations according to the CCSS
ð    Mornings before school devoted to helping students write their “books” since the school day’s ELA block is devoted singularly to test prep
ð    Money spent on supplies, snacks, water, and clothing for students who are not able to bring them from home
ð    Creation of blogs as a place for my students to share their passion for reading and responding to quality literature of their choosing
ð    Mentoring the 6 students in my class who suffer from a little too much excitability and creating plans to improve their focus and reduce their distractibility (without medication or intervention of any building level support staff)
ð    Encouraging the gender-questioning student that to be himself is ok and creating a safe environment for him to do so
ð    Conferring with the girls during lunchtime about the importance of including all classmates in recess activities and making follow up calls to each of their parents
ð    Providing lessons that differentiate for all types of learners using different modalities that the Pearson math program and the Expeditionary ELA modules are simply lacking
ð    Instilling love for learning,  developing my students’ natural curiosity, helping them feel successful and capable in even the smallest way

Measureable, Governor Cuomo? Perhaps not on the state exams but certainly on the faces of my students who enter our classrooms each and every morning with a smile on their face, a hug for their teacher and prepared to do their very best every day to meet the ridiculously unobtainable goals you are setting for them.






9 comments:

  1. Well written. I am a teacher in Colorado. In three days many of us are giving up a day of Spring Break to travel to a rally at our state capital steps to protest excessive testing, and the resources spent on that testing that is not spent on students, and the use of that testing to evaluate teachers. We teachers in Colorado are in unity with you. Keep fighting!

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  2. Well written. I am a teacher in Colorado. In three days many of us are giving up a day of Spring Break to travel to a rally at our state capital steps to protest excessive testing, and the resources spent on that testing that is not spent on students, and the use of that testing to evaluate teachers. We teachers in Colorado are in unity with you. Keep fighting!

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  3. Thank you for standing up for your students! I agree whole heartedly. Keep up the good fight and those of us who teach are behind you!

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  4. I'm in Connecticut. Day one of testing...the test had a glitch in the labeling of the performance task, instructing us to click on one, and then finding out, ten minutes in, we had to stop the test. AND restart in another one. That took forty minutes of kids sitting, waiting prior to testing. The state had no answer...in fact, they couldn't figure it out--took them fifteen minutes to do so, leaving our admin. and me and 22 kids (with approx. 100 others waiting too). The cable company does a better job, and that's saying an awful lot. Five days of this...and we've still run into glitches. But best yet...after this, we move onto NWEAs! What?!! Has the world gone crazy? I'm thinking Pearson and all the testing lobbyists are really having their day, much like the pharmaceutical companies and all the rest! What would happen if we opted out?!

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  6. men!! On Thursday we just held a rally and forum in my hometown to support public education and draw attention to Cuomo's nonsense. Scary times. Ugh!

    Love your list! We've been inviting him into our rooms as well, but he's a no show. My colleague got a "we regret to inform you..." letter.

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  7. Wow,
    Send your letter to The New York Times. So much goes on in a classroom, that they don't know anything about. You obviously love your students. How do you measure that?

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  8. Wow - beautifully conceived and writted. You GO teacher, go!

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  9. Wow - beautifully conceived and writted. You GO teacher, go!

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