18 August 2010


Before I delve into our tale of public education for the day, a quick word about this blog and its author:

I am a public school teacher, with 9 years of experience. I taught in the poorest per capita school in Indiana for 3 years, at a school in Colorado that had 1000 too many kids in it for 3 years, and am in my 3rd year teaching in what seems to be an ideal suburban school. I obviously have had many experiences, many of which are hilarious, and I intend to share them here, on the interwebs.

That being said, I also have exceptionally strong opinions about public education. I abhor movements which evaluate teachers with any real weight put on state tests. I like the idea of charter schools, but think that they should have to play by the same rules as public schools if they're going to tout their results.

I'm going to try and keep myself and the place where I work semi-anonymous (we'll see how well that goes).

On to the story for the day....
Today, in a quest to get a picture of the most ridiculous thing I have been asked to do as a teacher, I stopped into our school's journalism lab. The students were writing fictional obituaries of their lives. One of them, in a quest for inspiration, turned to the most inspiring person in the room. When he didn't have anything to say, she asked me a series of questions, ending with, "What age do you want to retire at?"

Without thinking, I replied "31".

You're thinking 1 of 2 things at this point. 1. This blog sucks or 2. So what, you want to retire at an unreasonably young age.

Here's the thing: I'm 30 right now. And I don't really want to retire at 31, but it sure feels like it some days.

Now, those of you in education know what I'm talking about, I suspect many of you in "real" jobs do as well. But you probably think that I, as a teacher, want to retire because the kids make me crazy.

Its not the kids.

Its never the kids. They're dumb. I knew that going in. That's what the taxpayers pay me to fix. Its the people at the top. That's where the problem is. Because they can't be fixed. And I suppose, in the grand scheme, that's what this blog is about. Its about the problems that most people don't know are out there. The problems that can't be fixed.

It might not make for great reading, but it'll be cathartic for me.

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