Carnival of Education #102

January 19, 2007

The 102nd Carnival of Education is underway at Dr. Homeslice. Substitutes and those wondering about unions should especially follow the links to this post from Get Lost Mr. Chips. Wise principals, vice principals and other administrators will follow the link, too.

LBJ and teachers and students in Cotulla, Texas, 1929

Principal and teacher Lyndon B. Johnson with students and fellow teachers in front of the Welhausen Grade School, May 7, 1929. Photo by Unknown, from LBJ Library, Austin, Texas.

We don’t need another heroic teacher

January 19, 2007

Freedom Writers arrives at local movie screens this weekend, putting another hero teacher out there as a model, teaching us all that even poor, tough kids from troubled schools can achieve great things, if only someone will take the time to get through to them some important lessons about life.

Frankly my dear, we don’t need another hero teacher.

But I’m not the first to think that. Bronx 10th-grade history teacher Tom Moore wrote an opposite-editorial page piece published today in the New York Times — Friday, January 19, 2007 (free subscription required, and free probably only for a week).

He writes:

While no one believes that hospitals are really like “ER” or that doctors are anything like “House,” no one blames doctors for the failure of the health care system. From No Child Left Behind to City Hall, teachers are accused of being incompetent and underqualified, while their appeals for better and safer workplaces are systematically ignored.

Every day teachers are blamed for what the system they’re just a part of doesn’t provide: safe, adequately staffed schools with the highest expectations for all students. But that’s not something one maverick teacher, no matter how idealistic, perky or self-sacrificing, can accomplish.

He’s right. Go read it. (Still working out solutions for middle schools . . . perhaps this weekend.)

Tip of the old scrub brush to reader R. Becker.

Freedom Writers Foundation home page here.

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