As a future educator, I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how to handle issues regarding race in the classroom and in the entire U.S. school system.
You may not be aware, but in America, funding for schools comes from property taxes. So, children who live in districts with less income from property taxes go to schools with lower funding. This means that students from low-income neighborhoods go to low-income schools. This disproportionately affects black students and students of color.
These students are given less opportunities than students as little as 5 miles away from them. Less access to technology. Older textbooks. Little to no access to advanced placement classes.
Within majority-white schools, black students are disciplined more harshly than white students. They are pulled out of class for minor rule violations. They are sent home for the way they wear their hair. They have the way they speak corrected by teachers.
I could go on. I could talk about how all of these disparities and more lead black students to be less likely to be accepted to college, less prepared for college, less motivated to learn. But I won’t.
I don’t know the solutions to these problems. But I know they are huge problems. It is the duty of all educators to create a safe and supportive environment for all students.
I encourage all educators and future educators to listen to black voices when considering what a safe and supportive environment looks like for your students.
I decided to make a farewell video for my students, since I wouldn’t get to see them in-person. It was really strange and I hate that I didn’t get to share in their successes during our final days…but I know they will still be amazing and successful no matter what.
Just a few wifey birthday pics. We’ve had a great lockdown family time today. Awesome. It’s been a gorgeous birthday. #Osuhor #family #god #life #love #faith #jesus #leadership #coaching #teaching #blessed #marriage #success #wife #instagood #photooftheday #instafamous #beautiful #followme #today #saturdayvibes #best #toptags #instagrammers #instalike #likeforlike #pretty #birthdaygirl #photography https://www.instagram.com/p/CBGqJ51JDGZi1E8DJyYZOk8Xkga2PpTmd4bpl00/?igshid=wo5ca4oeyq3c
Taught again for the first time since March today, I must be a little out of shape cuz’ I am shattered! Was fun though and my class are a really good bunch of kids! I had a bit of a fandom moment too when one student told me their name is Kolin ! Maybe their parents are cosmere fans !
🌷 M3 W11 - Sat - Who would you want to be stranded with on a deserted island ? 🌷
Let’s see, my partner and best friend, for funsies, trust and good ideas. + An expert in the local fauna and flora and an expert in quickly developping sustainable living and agriculture !
I never have and never will understand why the hardass training/teaching method exists. What I mean is, being taught the mentality that you have to suffer and sacrifice your own happiness and wellbeing to get better at or learn something and that it will make you great at it. Yelling at your students or trainees and lambasting them with insults and forcing them to torture themselves to get better at something is so fucking stupid. It reminds me of those people that say the best artists were all mentally ill or ‘tortured souls’ or something ridiculous like that. All you accomplish by tormenting someone until they get better at or learn something is pushing them closer to an edge they can’t come back from. If they give up, it’s not because they just aren’t 'cut out’ for something, it’s because your method ruined their reason to even bother trying. It’s your fault. Yeah, you can move on to a new talent, student, or trainee but you’ve robbed someone and the world of something that could have been wonderful, and now you’re going to blame it on someone not being “tough enough.” Great job, you fucking asshole.
I literally cried writing my congratulations on honor roll message to one of my students because he was my toughest kid by far and doesn’t have much confidence, and I know how hard he worked on his behavior and grades. I also know his parent doesn’t really show support for his academics, so it made it all the more important for me to tell him how proud I am of what he accomplished.
A bachelor’s degree but on top of your normal classes you have field experience & semester of student teaching under a mentor (approx. 4 years)
(Before entering a single school for field experience you pay $100 for fingerprinting) Safety! 😃
For teaching Birth-Grade 6, hundreds of dollars spent to take at least 7 different certification tests (5 Content specialty tests, 1 Educating All Students test, and the dreaded edTPA — more below)
The edTPA costs $300 and is where you write 3-5 highly detailed lessons discussing every material you will need, what students have already learned, personal/cultural/community assets you are utilizing, the modalities the lesson appeals to, technology you are using, learning strategies, State Standards the lessons use. THEN, you film yourself teaching these lessons, and then pretty much justify why you did what you did in the classroom, fix your lessons, then submit it to a grader. If you fail only one part that’s $90 to fix it and resubmit.
Apply for your initial certification.
A master’s degree w/ field work and, depending on the degree, more student teaching (approx. 2 years).
More certification exams!
CONGRATS! You’re a teacher working in a school! Now you have an experienced teacher as your mentor for your 1st year.
Almost done! You have to take 100 hours of professional development workshops, seminars, webinars, etc. over 5 years.
Disclaimer: I’m not going to do the research and fact finding for you. For anyone. I’m done being nice and told to wait as an LGBTQ+ individual. I’m done hearing that for the safety of my students and guns. I’m done hearing that being said to POC.
No, it isn’t time to wait. Fuck that and fuck anyone who believes that. We’ve been told to wait for decades.
I’ve always been willing to teach, to give information, to help understand. To be kind to those who need educated. Not anymore.
Want proof? Want evidence? Fucking educate yourselves. Do the foot work yourself. Read a goddamn book. Look at real statistics. Stop relying on people to spoon feed information to you.
My students are better at finding the truth than most adults are, so “grow the fuck up” doesn’t even apply here.
this is my current bedtime reading book and I keep punching the air and going YES!!!! out loud. in my postdoc teaching year I did all these experiments where the goal was to maximize the time students spent up and moving around the room (and/or engaging in tasks that required physical manipulation of objects). because I had this feeling that physical + intellectual engagement were linked (partly bc of observing M teach kindergartners!). and this book is basically like Yes, It’s Science!!!!
Mrs. T and I had some students who submitted drafts of their Spring Book Projects for the third or fourth time today, so we decided to swap proofreading lists because we thought it would be good for them to get fresh eyes on their work. So I took all the projects she’d already proofread, and vice versa, and I think it worked out well.
It’s been interesting to see which books students have strong reactions to. Barbara Demick’s Nothing To Envy and Rusty Bradley’s Lions of Kandahar both seem to be well-liked, but I think the one that’s really resonating is Malalai Joya’s A Woman Among Warlords. All of the projects about that book are really thoughtful. A few of the students who read it had also read I Am Malala in middle school, and made some interesting comparisons between the two texts, which is neat.
Mrs. T and I take turns contacting the students who are behind on drafting, and today it was her turn to do it, but a few students ended up emailing me to check in or ask for help, so I was able to tell her she could take them off her list.
Teamwork makes the dream work.
Aside from reading ninth grade projects for the better part of the day, I also checked a couple late and/or revised assignments from my seniors, who will officially finish their year tomorrow. I did, admittedly, work through lunch, but I grabbed a sandwich from the local deli during what would have been my “prep” time, so I got a bit of a break then.
2/2 social interaction. I especially like making notes and learning to understand cool concepts (though a bit more practicality might be nice). Basically, school is my comfort zone. There isn’t really any other creative work I have a long-standing interest in, and I have hardly any practical skills. The only thing I really enjoy is school as it is now, regimentation and all (though my school’s a lot more lenient than most). Does that make me boring and unoriginal? I feel like it does, and that
I feel like I should be good at things that are more useful. But I just like studying a variety of subjects as it is now (including some I hate, school wouldn’t be the same without them). People say the education system has failed us, and I do believe that our test design is really stupid, but the stupid education system is all I’m good at. Then am I going to be a failure at life instead? (thanks if you read all this!)
Ok first off, I’m sooooo sorry that this took me so long to answer. I’ve been basically closed off to everything outside my house because I can’t handle it, including social media, and uh, that’s not a good move for me, apparently. Anyway!
I was thinking about what you said a lot and as a teacher it makes me soooo frustrated but also it’s intriguing??
First thought, everyone learns differently. If you learn best by just reading the material, that’s great! That means the school system, in a lot of ways, was made for you. I was the same way. Just let me read, don’t make me do group work, I didn’t need to study for tests because I either knew the material or I didn’t.
I know that the idea of school killing creativity is a popular one but I beg to differ. A whole lot. Exams kill creativity. The way that students are assessed kills creativity. Standardized testing that assumes students under vastly different circumstances with different resources and teachers should perform the exact same way? That kills creativity. So yeah, the test design is stupid.
It probably differs a lot depending on what you study. When you get to university, chances are that if you are in a liberal arts field, you will be required to be creative. When you hit grad school (I know, very different circumstances), if you don’t have original ideas, you’re out.
Education itself is not inherently anti-creativity. If you have good teachers, it’s the opposite. Every single semester I teach the same couple of classes and train students on the same job, and every single semester I sit down and spend hours upon hours trying to figure out how I can do better. How I can be more engaging. How I can meet students where they are, appeal to their interests, be more clear in my communication. Etc. I know that not all teachers do that and I’m NOT trying to toot my horn but!!! I also don’t want people to paint all teachers with the same broad “they don’t give a shit” brush. The system itself really constrains what teachers can and can’t do, which is why I cannot teach at the grade school level! I need to teach at a university where I don’t have to deal with any standardization. Eff that.
Being able to learn in different circumstances and *wanting* to learn will be super useful to you later. Degrees don’t fit jobs perfectly (at least not in my experience). You aren’t learning how to work so much as you are learning about concepts. The practical work always comes later, and as long as you like learning, you’ll pick it up quickly! Don’t worry about enjoying something that other people haven’t found use for. If you have, that’s all that matters. If you can make your education both enjoyable and use it to get you want you want? Perfect.
Bursari Executive Vice President, Steven Virgadamo has spent 30 years as a national leader in the American K-12 educational system. It is not unusual for school leaders to seek his guidance and counsel on a regular and frequent basis. We asked Steve to share with you some of the counsel he provides to school leaders with regards to the reopening of K-12 schools in a Covid19 world. He shared the following:
Students and staff should wear masks and pass through temperature reading cameras as they come on campus.
Hallways should be designated one way to allow for social distancing and safe passage.
Stickers should be placed 6 feet apart on stairwells, hallways, and other public areas to promote, remind and encourage social distancing.
Signs asking scholars to safe distance should be displayed throughout the building.
Students and staff should be given safe distancing “scores.”
Campuses should be closed to visitors.
Student and staff temperatures should be monitored frequently.
Hand sanitizers should be available throughout the building especially at the entrance and exits of classrooms.
Dining hall usage should be canceled, and students should eat in classrooms.
Transportation routes should be adjusted to reduce overcrowding on buses.
Assembly plans should follow the guidelines utilized in each state for public gatherings.
Sport seasons should be changed to delay any implementation of contact sports which do not allow for appropriate social distancing until later in the school year.
Students should have an e-device dedicated to them for their exclusive use.
Student workstations should be sanitized with wipes between classes and the buildings should be disinfected regularly.
Electronic thermometers should be utilized to read student temperatures frequently throughout the day.
Plexiglass study hall like corrals may be placed on each student workstation.
Parents should be asked to electronically sign each of their children into school and document that the child is not ill.
A safe place and comfortable should be dedicated to quarantine any ill student.
The handling of papers, forms, currency, checks etc. should be minimized as these items are just as likely to spread the virus as physical contact.
Protecting the health and wellbeing of school staff and students must be of paramount importance for every school leader. Bursari.com can help you provide a safer environment for the reopening of school and signing a school up for Bursari is simple and easy. There are no contracts, sign up fees or maintenance costs. Don’t leave the remote world of schooling and return to campus without it.