Sunday, January 31, 2010



The public voted for this because our politicians refused to listen to their wants. Now the politicians want to weasel out of what the voters CONSTITUTIONALLY required.

They MUST follow the voters wishes UNLESS they succeed in changing the amendment.

Don't get fooled!

No matter how you felt about the amendment most voters believed it was the only route left after decades of broken promises, lackluster funding
and superficial support of education.

Teachers who admitted they voted for it also admitted that they had no faith in their politicians or school board - minor distinction - to fund education properly.

Our Board and Superintendent retaliated by ramming teaching 6 out of 7 down our throats. Read previous posts if you just came aboard.

Do you really think they will rescind the extra period we are required to teach?

Do you think CTA has a strategy prepared?

Do you really think the board will "average class loads" without including guidance counselors, media specialists, tech specialists, curriculum specialists, psychologists and anyone else they can stretch the definition of "student contact" to cover? All to make it look good on paper.

"Averaging" will make it possible for you to have classes with 35 students in each class and still only have one conference period - while your next door neighbor can have 18.

That was the standard operating procedure and the public finally caught on.

Some totally incompetent administrators take the easy way out when scheduling - a deadly and gruesome combination for unhappy teachers and lower morale.

This attempt, if successful, will only make the coming storm over the Gates-inspired teacher evaluation instrument WORSE.

Don't fall for it. Don't let anyone else fall for it. Stay alert on this one. Get vocal.



Anonymous said...


Exactly. Nobody cares what we think and why should they? I think the leadership are compelled by conditions they can’t even control. Really, what can they do? Its all about money and political expediency. I just can no longer summon the righteous anger I once felt and expressed.

When I was a young man, I remember listing to my elders bemoaning the direction the country, and most specifically education, was heading.

I remember thinking that the old folks were out of touch with the new ideas that were gaining strength. I thought they should just leave if they didn’t like it.

Now, I have become the elder and I see that it is now time for me to step aside and let others take the lead. I personally feel that the school district has sold its soul but who knows? I now think that they are reacting to economic and social forces they even they are unable to control.

Most conscientious teachers know that there are many in the profession who should have gotten out long ago out but hang on just taking a paycheck, concerned about their pensions and the sad fact that jobs at our age are difficult to find.

I don’t want to be one of those sad, pitiful and contemptible people. I truly feel I still have something to offer, still love the daily interchange with kids, but I have come to the conclusion that I am a dinosaur.

I am tired of complaining and frankly; it does no good and serves only to make me a lesser man. The people who run the school system have chosen a path I don't believe in and I owe it to my own sense of dignity to walk away and let them pursue it with people who are true believers.

My own father, after a long career as a Naval officer, chose teaching as a second career. He loved it and was loved by his students. I still remember the night he and my mother came to Tampa for a visit. He had become very disillusioned. He tried to temper his feelings as I was just embarking on my own teaching career but it was clear he had burned out. He resigned and spent 8 wonderful and happy years with my mother. He never looked back and enjoyed his last years.

I am not in the same position as my dad. I have to work another decade before I can realistically retire but in America even old guys like me can reinvent themselves. I am blessed to have a wife who supports my decision, even though it will mean a diminished financial position.
This is my last year. I will miss the kids. They have given me such joy. I just don't feel we are doing right by them.

I am sorry this was so long. I feel better for having written it.

To all the bloggers who have so powerfully pointed out the problems, I wish you luck.

Its time for the dinosaurs like me to step aside.

Anonymous said...

You are right! Nothing happens--or doesn't happen-- unless voters/parents are informed!

Suzie Creamcheese said...


Well put. Thank you.

It is unfortunate that our culture in general discounts the wisdom and insight of our experienced elders.

Your post expresses what I have heard these last 5-7 years in an incisive and enlightened "voice".

It shows you STILL have your "talent" and, in my opinion anyway, do not reflect the least bit of "dinosaur".

I wish you all the best, Suzie.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, dinosaur. You have many like you out here. I'm also tired of complaining, trying to change this county "machine", and am feeling disillusioned. I still think I have a lot to offer and will continue to do so for the required number of years. I really can't imagine doing much else. This year has been a real
difficult one--new exam exemption policy and new "improved" calendar. I'll do what I can-- one kid at a time. Let the younger ones do the protests and all that stuff and work on the system.

Anonymous said...

I will VOTE with relish!

Anonymous said...

Another anonymous dinosaur here--I read in today's paper that middle schools will be adding that oh-so-productive extra period next year. So much for committes, task forces, and listening to teachers regarding the impact of doing so. Yes--it IS all about the money. And then there're the Gates folks....