Teach the children well. If you can’t teach, you should be grateful to those who can..etc. It’s school time again. I’ve been around teachers all my life. My dad was a teacher and I sleep with one*. I am friends, both Facebook and in so-called real life, with many more. I am not necessarily speaking for anybody besides me.
Here in Nashville, and in Tennessee, veteran teachers have been buffeted and metaphorically battered by state government and local government (not talking about Principals and folks in the schools). Start with the stripping of the teacher unions to effectively negotiate, the attack on tenure, thanks to the new evaluation system that damaged morale more than anyone not teacher, or living with a teacher could understand, and now we have the latest insult: new teachers will be guaranteed a certain level of pay (higher than in the past), and current, veteran teachers get no raise.
To be very clear, it is not realistic to expect raises every year (either as a state employee like myself, or a local teacher). Tenure should not be iron-clad, and a good evaluation process is extremely important to rid the school system of incompetent teachers, and much more importantly, to offer ‘course correction’ for those teachers who are generally doing a good job. Nonetheless, the way this was all handled over the past few years was destructive. If you are a ‘specials’ teacher (art, music, PE), the basis of your evaluation made even less sense.
The state is tweaking the evaluation process, and I believe that system will improve. What the state and metro should also tweak is their approach to veteran teachers who have been pouring their heart, their time, and in many cases their own money into their jobs.
I laud the passion of my wife, Lynn Ownby Hutcheson, Abigail Reynolds, Linda Summey Slayton, Linda Sabol Hagan and many many others who really do care and should be honored (at least occasionally with a raise and an acknowledgement).
Once again, these words are my own, and my not be endorsed by any of the people listed above.
*uh, I should add I’ve been married to this teacher for nearly 35 years.