March 19, 2010
This post is the first of many “F-ed Up Fridays” where I post the bad, the ugly, the horrific, and the insane among education news.
In today’s story, horrific may not be a strong enough adjective to describe the teacher’s actions. Sam Linton, an 11 year old in the UK, died from an asthma attack after his teacher refused to help him because she was in a meeting at the time. Even this boy’s friends had enough common sense to approach the teacher for help. Her response? “Go away.” She then added, “I know Sam is there and he will have to wait.” The boy died after finally getting help hours later – from a teacher his 13 year old brother.
This is an awful tragedy and I’m sure that the teacher, Janet Ford, had no intention of killing this boy. Yet, her arrogance allowed it to happen. This hubris, demonstrated by her comment that “he will have to wait,” is founded on the common belief among teachers that they have absolute authority and student needs are totally subservient to the teacher’s sense of good order (which can vary wildly).
Sam probably created headaches for Miss Ford that day, so she marginalized him. His friends had probably acted out in the past, so she ignored their concerns. She attended to bureaucracy, while ignoring the needs of the human beings. I see this attitude daily, but never with such tragic results.
And, Miss Ford hasn’t even been suspended. God bless education.
March 18, 2010
I’ve decided that Friday posts will be a part of an ongoing series called “F-ed Up Fridays.” Basically, the silly, farcical, and dark side of education will be spotlighted here, mainly taken from news stories. And, of course, I’ll be adding my own thoughts.
Saturday posts will be devoted to “Spotlight Saturdays” where I highlight good, bad, and downright ugly teachers with none of the details spared. I would like to take submissions for this category since I’m sure there is no shortage and loads of people probably need to get some of the horror stories off their chest. I only ask that every submission be well-written. I’ll tackle the first few and will post an email address later for those interested in helping out.
March 17, 2010
The world has another blog. I’ll pause for a moment so those two spam bots can go ahead and cheer. As a teacher who is in love with teaching kids, but perpetually frustrated by ‘education,’ this blog will be an opportunity for me to share my thoughts and experiences with a system that is in desperate need of reform– and not just in the way that you think.
When many observers think of education reform, they conjure images of statistics, objectives, and keeping up with the
Soviets Indians. While I recognize the importance of hard objectives, my personal beef with the current educational climate is that it’s impersonal and in many ways inhumane. It helps those primed for success to succeed while doing very little for those students predestined to fail. It focuses on numbers, alleged objectives, and pedantic systems of discipline, instead of providing the motivation and skills for human beings to be successful people and contributors to society.
This blog will be a mixture of current events and policy discussion, spotlights on good and bad teachers, my own personal experiences with education, and even some of my fiction. Check out the About Me page for more info about my background, etc.
March 16, 2010
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