I’ve read through at this point, and anyone who cannot see this teacher’s frustration simply cannot see.
I was inspired early in the reading, and I stopped and wrote this:
Assume for the moment that I am a trainer for a company.
My employer employs me to train new-hires and bring them up to speed per the company’s needs. If I am good at these duties, I help the best and brightest move through the program quickly, minimizing resources expended on them while they become useful to the company, helping in profitability, and ensuring longevity in their position and the company’s ability to continue to pay them and increase their salary in accordance with their value to the company.
Likewise, for the average personnel, it will be my duty to help each obtain competency in a reasonable time-frame with a reasonable amount of resources expended. These employees can then move on into full partnership in the work of the company as value generators, increasing profitability such that they have longevity and continuing reasonable increases in their salaries, consistent with their abilities and value to the company.
The company has certain goals. The company has narrow focus. The company cannot afford incompetency or lethargy. As the trainer, it is my duty to keep focus and ensure each new-hire learns these facts of the company, and each learns the skills the company needs. Each new-hire must come to understand that the company’s needs are limited. Many skills are simply inappropriate for achieving the company goals and ensuring continued profitability.
Accordingly, my duties as trainer include weeding out those who simply will not get it, even if they have exceptional talents in some areas, areas the company does not need. Those who are not going to contribute to achieving company goals and continued profitability must go, pink slips.
Rigorous. Yes, absolutely.
As the company trainer, I need to be adaptable and flexible in teaching so as to maximize efficiency and minimize costs associated with training, which by its nature is unproductive and unprofitable. (Fortunately companies recognize the need for training and preliminary value, thus increasing profitability over the longer term.)
Rigor in this instance is good and essential, even though it is harsh. With our new-people, our children, we really do not want rigor. We want the tailoring, the flexibility, and adaptability of our teachers, our systems, and our instructional material, and requiring rigor there seems useful, as long as we maintain relationships and don’t loose sight of the fact that we are all people, regular people, not supermen.
But rigor is not what we need of our students.
We need to partner with them. We need to equip them with tools and the skills to use those tools to become whatever they want to become. We are humanity, not the company. We have no overall goals, other than to maximize the potential of everyone of us. Let’s let freedom figure out the rest. We don’t need college and career ready. We need people who understand what love and relationship means, people who know it first hand, and people who, by the way, know how to read and cipher and think outside their own emotion-filled box—people who grasp reality and are able to deal with it. We do not need standardized tests to ensure this is what we get.
Georgie Porgie, Puddin’ and Pie,
Took some tests that made him cry,
When the computers came on in May,
Georgie Porgie ran away.
Georgie Porgie is headed straight towards issues with mental health.
Welcome to Georgie Porgie’s crazy making, “rigorous” world.
As the concept of “rigor” is explored, a picture of a ladder comes to mind. Think of a ladder with 12 rungs. Children enter classrooms standing upon different rungs. Picture for one moment, a child standing on rung one. All the rungs in between are missing leading up to the ultimate rung…
- How does the child reach rung 12, when the stepping stones to 12 are gone?
- Do we look at the individual child and offer instruction at their individual level?
- Do we take into account what is developmentally appropriate for each and every child?
- Do we…
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