View Full Version : Who should Obama appoint to be his Education Secretary?

Dec 09, 2008, 15:36
I've had one teacher, Pat, send me a private message. Perhaps there are more of us, on this site. Whether or not that's the case is not important. As a teacher, who feels that the bureaucrats in charge are mismanaging the educational system, I think that this cabinet selection will be extremely im portant.

If Obama chooses Michelle Rhee, or Joel Klein, two very agressive, anti-teacher chancellors/school executives, I think that the coddling of ******* behavior, on the part of students and parents, will continue, at the expense of teachers, whom are almost exclusively blamed for the failures of a society that values all that is superficial, and, as a result, produces superficial, incomplete people.

The article I've linked two describes Obama as having two choices: select a "pro-teacher" person, which the author insinuates would mean that the person would be against improving education, when it actually means they don't believe that attacking teachers is the solution needed to solve this problem, or a "reform" person, which the author insinuates, and this is true, means that he or she believes that teachers should be blamed for the failings of individuals that, in my professional opinion, often don't want to do well in life.

Ideally, if I could choose the secretary of education, I'd pick Bill Cosby, who was a teacher and holds a Education doctorate. He speaks the truth, no holds barred, about what a lot of these kids are like. He doesn't react to everything with some sort of liberal, or other ideological, cookie-cutter response. I've heard him talk about kids with nothing in their bookbags, sagging pants, no respect for themselves or others. He links their attitude, and rightfully so, directly to their academic deficiencies.

I believe that there is a lot more that school systems can do for kids, insofar as college prep., college writing, career research, just overall personal development, but the people who attack teachers are actually the ones with the authority to institute these programs. Their attack on teachers is based on their feelings that the test scores, and graduation rates, are too low. In my opinion, if you can't get out of a US high school academic program, you're not doing your job as a student. To me, the main challenge faced by American students is that of inexperience, in the face of entering the very challenging world of college, universities, trade schools, etc.

Anyway, below is an article that provides more details, if you're interested. I'd be glad to read, and respond to, your comments.


Dec 09, 2008, 17:58
I do not like Michele Rhee...Dumb bitch

Dec 10, 2008, 04:08
What up, tuner?

Well, personally, I don't know much about her, except that she's usually mentioned in the same breath as Joel Klein is, which means she's probably a manipulative, superficial, ideological nut, who uses the education issue to further her career, instead of actually making meangingful, and practical policy changes to DC schools.

Right now, I would call teaching the worst of the professions. Not only does one deal with disrespect within the classroom, from most students, these days, one has to deal with it outside, as well, from people like Rhee and Klein, who are supposed to be working with us, instead of against us.

I've seen brand new, fresh out of college teachers scapegoated, used as "accountability" statistics, since they lack tenure due process rights, so that these pieces of trash can print some numbers that show that they're accomplishing their shallow objectives: shake teachers up, without doing anything else, which is supposed to eventually make bad schools good.

I think Obama needs to do what he said he would, tell parents that he, and I quote, "will fund schools, but people have to be responsible parents." I've had parents tell me that it's my job to raise their children, when they're on school, that they don't care how their children do, as long as they get at least 65's, and that they don't want to cause their child stress, by insisting that they study. These are just a couple of examples. And the kids are even worse, I'm talking people knocked out, backs damaged from chair-wielding "babies," as one principal called some crazy ninth graders that I once taught, and teachers having their property: digital cameras, new laptops, I-PODs, etc., stolen.

These days, classrooms look more like a McDonald's than centers of learning; I've had kids bust out sandwiches, phones, PSPs, right in my face, while I'm trying to teach them, and, when asked, they have no pen, pencil or notebook. This is somehow my fault? I'm sure you don't think so, but this is what the likes of Joel Klein, and his six figure salary sycophants, preach.

Whatever the kids were like when you were in school, tuner, multiply their unruly behavior by 100, and you might have an understanding of what goes on in the average city school, these days. It's really, really bad. I think this largely explains why 50 percent of teachers quit, within the first three years of entering the profession; yet, somehow, no one seems to want to know why. My guess is because their little house of cards would come falling down.

What is this card made of? Well, let me give you a couple of examples. Last year, at a PD (professional development) session, the school principal said, "if the kids aren't learning, it has to be your fault. Surely, it's not their fault." This statement has been uttered by numerous people, who hold some of the highest positions of power, in education. I've confronted a few of their underlings, with examples where they themselves, while working in schools, have been cursed out by students, and they simply say that we can't make "value judgements" on what students do, that this is normal for these kids! Then, without knowing my background, which is a very rough one, they explain how I'm out of touch and don't understand "what these kids go through," that "these kids didn't grow up like us." This might work with a White person, who doesn't know better, but not with me. What can I do, though? They have the power, and we, the teachers, don't.

I don't think that Cosby appointed, the non-minorities, who say that the kids' behavior is cultural and has to be nurtured, don't approve of his attitude. Anyway, Tuner, please, no matter what anyone ever tells you, never, ever become a teacher. I've seen people go through hell, as a result of making the decision to go into this profession. The atmosphere, at the moment, is not favorable to new teachers. It's always been rough to be a new teacher, but, when they're gunning for "accountability" stats, new teachers, who lack tenure, are the first to go, because they have very little protection. Nowadays, too, people are being banned, after having spent years obtaining master's degrees and numerous certificates.

Anyway, bro... PEACE.

Dec 10, 2008, 09:58
There was an article in Time magazine about her...She has fired like over 200 teachers in the last year....