Sticking Up For Teachers

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

(Yasmeen Khan)

Garret Keizer tells us about returning to the same rural Vermont high school where he taught 14 years ago. He talks about what has changed since his teaching days, and he examines the obstacles and challenges that teachers face daily. In his book Getting Schooled: The Reeducation of an American Teacher, he argues against the popular beliefs that public education is doomed, that the heroic teacher is the cure for all that ails education, and that educational reform can serve as a substitute for societal reform.



Garret Keizer

Comments [2]

jgarbuz from Queens

The raison detre of public "education" (K-12) is to warehouse kids and keep them off the streets and relatively safe so that their parents can go about their business. If the kids actually learn anything that is purely incidental and a pleasant surprise, but the simple fact is that you cannot increase intelligence by pouring a lot of "education" over kids' heads.
The most important thing is to be able to control the classroom and keep them safe. And if they do pick up a little knowledge, that's cool too.

Aug. 27 2014 12:59 PM

As a sixteen year veteran teacher in NJ, I too am thinking about homeschooling my children which is unfortunate because I was educated in public schools and am a strong believer in public education. My decision has nothing to do with the teachers but the politicians who are putting unrealistic goals and expectations that are impossible to meet. What I am seeing more and more in public schools and the pressure that it places on teachers, is that it is inevitable teachers will not be able to do all that is asked of them and are going to leave and are leaving in droves. Teachers just like superintendents in New Jersey are going to be quitting in record numbers (the turnover rate was already 3 - 5 years) . Who will suffer? The children. With charter schools in my district, the numbers in my class have soared and it has left my public school with the toughest students. With the constant criticism from politicians and others, the threat to my pension from the Governor of NJ and all of the other ridiculous stresses that are placed on teachers, I have found that it is not worth it anymore. I am saddened by this because I love my students and the fact that everyday I can help someone in some small way. However, at the end of the day I find it hard to be both a parent and teacher. It seems ironic because so many believe that teaching is a dream job for parents and it simply is not.

Aug. 27 2014 12:57 PM

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