So, I know I’ve been linking to tons of articles lately and I promise to get back to the usual hilarity of the classroom, but just too much has been going on. My little brain is on fire and my eyes are bleeding from staring at the computer screen. Plus, I haven’t even begun to digest the whole Obama on education thing yet.
Anyway, while I was
procrastinating reading through some old articles this morning, I came across this one that I saved. I mean, obvi. Check out the title (Bobb Making Sure DPS Teachers Get To Teach). Um, hello, it’s about time? Yeah, nice to meet you. This article is about the Detroit public schools. Evidently their “emergency financial manager” (or Dude In A Suit) is looking into how teachers spend their time, since many of them aren’t actually teaching. At first I was all, “WTF? Teachers are doing the best they can do! You try it Suit Guy!” But then I kept reading and realized that the article is referring to all the teachers who are employed by schools and are required to teach five periods a day, yet only see two or three classes. This means other teachers are getting screwed with larger class sizes which isn’t good for their sanity anyone.
Let me give a big old disclaimer by saying I don’t know anything about this dude except for what I’ve read in this article. From this article I have learned that a) he has nice taste in suits, and b) he has a bit of a point.
Walk with me down memory lane for a moment as I
rant spin a tale of wasted time. Now while most of the regular classroom teachers were busting their butts trying to squeeze every ounce of learning out of every single minute humanly possible, were running around like crazy people to fit it all into one day, were killing themselves to maximize the learning opportunities created each and every day, there were other teachers (It’s always the OTHER TEACHERS…)who were, let’s say, doing less than that.
Disclaimer number two and an indication that maybe I should reign in my opinions if I need two disclaimers: Big Mama Mimi is currently an out of the classroom teacher who kicks a*s each and every day. She is the Champion of All Out of the Classroom Teachers and if I have my way, there will be a statue in her honor built in the atrium of her school upon her retirement. So, I know friends, I know those amazing out of the classroom types exist and to them I blow many kisses and beg them to understand – I’m NOT talking about you.
I’m talking about the out of the classroom teachers who seemed to only have three scheduled classes each day, despite having six available blocks in their schedule. I mean, there were days that Mr. Big White Guitar didn’t actually start “teaching” until after lunch. AFTER LUNCH. Yeah, the dude who was on the same salary scale as I was. What did he do all day? Well, besides arrive at the same time as the children, I have no idea. In all fairness, there were days that he was pulled from his regular classes to sub around the building, which I think would totally suck. Totally not his fault and exactly what this article is talking about. However, all those other days? NOT A CLUE, PEOPLE. Don’t even get me started about the time he called me “prep hungry” when I complained about losing a prep and his refusal to make it up at a later time during the day which was totally free.
Then we had other out of the classroom people such as the Fanny Pack, who always seemed to manage to show up to my room to “push in” 10-15 minutes late. Despite the fact that she was coming from a class RIGHT DOWN THE HALL. Then she routinely sat in the back, drank water out of a paper cup (which she threw on the floor), and then in a very outdoor voice, called children, who she may or may not supposed to be working with, to come see her. Why was she late? What did she do back there besides litter? NO IDEA.
What are these people doing with all their time? I’m thinking nothing.
However, I would argue that the article left some important figures out of the whole “how teachers spend their time” part. (Maybe, like, all that, like, super hard math, like, was done by a woman, ‘cuz, like, you know, math is harder for them? And so they did as well as they could?) (Please tell me you got this hilarious reference to yesterday’s post / recent news travesty.)
I mean, let’s be honest here. How much time do we spend doing paperwork? Are you with me on this one? I know that some paperwork is essential and totally comes with the territory. However, I also know that approximately 30% of my paperwork fell into that category. (How’s that for some math from a woman? IN YOUR FACE, STUDY!) The rest of my paperwork fell into several other worthless categories such as:
* Paper I Have To Give To Someone To File So It Looks Like They Are Doing Something
* Graphs I Have To Make Because Of Course Testing Data Has To Be Displayed In Five Forms And In Triplicate
* Papers I Have To Fill Out So Someone Else Can Cover Their Behind
* Just Dumb
How come all of that time is not being factored into the report? I mean, if they really want to delve into the idea of how much time teachers are spending NOT TEACHING because of other assigned tasks, duties and meetings, then I have a whole can of worms right here. And it’s just begging to be opened.