Friday, May 25, 2012

Don't underestimate the importance of class size

So Mitt Romney believes that class size is not the only issue when it comes to teaching effectively. No duh. But in order for all those good education practices he speaks about to create an environment for learning, you just gotta limit class size to 20 and under. You can't get a handle on the other issues if class size is not a big part of the conversation.  Most importantly, I'd like him and any "education reformer" from either party to come and say that class size is not an issue in an inner city middle public school, after they have taught for ONE DAY. Then grade and lesson plan for all your students for the next.  Then we can have a conversation about class size.

This commenter tells it like it is.  BTW, good for Romney for at least coming into the inner city school.

Texas Public school teacherAs an educator i do have one question for everyone: 
Have you considered that maybe teachers know what works? 
Too many people think that there is just one answer to what works for public education, but you have to stop treating it like it is some scientific equation. There is no ONE correct answer. 
Teaching is an art. It requires constant adjustment to the 150 new variables you receive at the beginning of every year. We struggle to have the kids understand the overwhelming number of concepts the local and federal governments decide we need to teach, knowing full well that without sufficient time to practice these skills will be quickly forgotten. We have constant interruptions to our teaching for standardized testing and then are lambasted for the low results we predicted would happen. 
If you want us to perform better in school have us teach fewer concepts but more in depth. We need to raise the intellectual capacity of the student and equip them with the ability to process unknown information. 
Charter schools can be a good idea, but as implemented most of them try for a strict business structure. This leads to failure in educating everyone. As a teacher i cannot "fire" my unproductive employee. They must be convinced that an education is worth it.
The idea of vouchers would leave behind those the charter schools deem as undesirable condemning them to a poorly funded education with second rate or overwhelmed teachers. We teach not because we can't do anything else. We teach because we truly refuse to leave the children to a lifetime of ignorance. 
By the way. Think about it if you are reading this....How exactly did you learn to read?
your parents are the first teachers and there is no exact science to parenting either.

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