Introduction: This is similar to take two, but I felt it necessary to slightly change my argument after reading the following article from the Washington Post: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/10/07/AR2010100705078.html
"The Other Side of the Equation"
[A growing number of major news agencies and school leaders are highlighting the importance of helping ineffective teachers transition into new careers, however, there has been an inadequate discussion of the other side of the equation; creating and molding excellent teachers. First of all, there needs to be increased recognition of the importance of great public school teachers and improve their prestige, pay and diversify the opportunities for promotion. Outside of the three "P"s, there needs to be a change in teacher education. A degree in teaching should be synonymous with the most arduous of majors. Increasing the rigors of these programs will help separate the wheat, those truly dedicated and interest in changing the lives of their students, from the chafe, those entering the profession for seemingly steady employment prospects and government-employee benefits. Furthermore, distinguishing the merit of a degree in education will promote the prestige of teaching and discourage the adage that "those who can't do, teach." Finally, there needs to be an overhaul for the continued development of teachers; no longer can staff meetings be considered "professional development." Administrators must make adequate, meaningful, and deliberate time for real development, both within teachers' daily schedules and during separate professional development days. Additionally, oversight and following through to ensure these sessions are effectively achieving the desired end of continued improvement is needed. Overall, improving teacher quality must be as central as the elimination of under-performers because otherwise public education will lack the necessary effective, long-term change.]
Word Count: 245
All the caveats given for the other two drafts apply to this one as well.
In other news, this past week I worked with one of the sixth grade teachers at the school, Cristina, to develop an anti-bullying program to be implemented by the older students educating the younger students about bullying, why it happens, its harmful effects, and how to change it to create a more positive school culture. Today we "trained" the older students in what their responsibilities would be for this campaign and to be honest, I was concerned with how this would "stick" with them. First of all, due to the difference in dismissal schedule, we needed to break the training into two sections: the 7th and 8th grade student leaders were led by Cristina and I had the 9th and 10th graders. I don't know many of the 10th graders and so I wasn't sure if a lack of a personal connection would inhibit our time together, but I was blown away in such a positive way by their response. I am intrigued as to how successful the program will end up being, but I am hopeful! I hope all are doing well!
My goal for tomorrow: 250 Take 4 - "Frat Boy" - get excited lol