Monday, July 23, 2012

Term Limits

Last night I had dinner with a few of my favorite educators. As we lamented the state of our field and the poor decision making from those in the central office that keeps us from doing our jobs one teacher said, "Working at central office should be like congress- three years in and that you have to go back into the schools for a few years."

Brilliant.

Those making decisions for us, planning curriculum, managing how we should spend our time and money should never be more than three years away from school experience.

There is the part where we want them to remember exactly how hard the jobs is- they should never forget what it is like to go 8 hours without going to the bathroom, balancing frustrated parents, active kids, testing and curriculum. But really it's more than just that.

How much time is wasted every year as individual schools and individual teachers try to take what has been handed to them by the central office and mold it into a working reality? If those in the central office in a district were in closer touch with what happened inside schools could we save on all of that time? If we were to remove the frustration between the central office and teachers- what more could be done if we were working together as a team?

3 comments:

The Science Goddess said...

I'm all for that. I'm also all for teachers having to work in the district office (or state office) for a period of time in order to get a more systemic view of education.

As a teacher, I get why other teachers don't like what is being done "to" them by policy-makers who have never been in the classroom. But if we're going to throw stones, then we also have to get out of our glass classrooms once in awhile to understand education from other perspectives. Walking in the shoes of another can be done by everyone in the system---not just central office types.

organized chaos said...

Excellent point. I think you're so right- as teachers we need to understand the big picture- why we're being asked to do certain things. A revolving door of school to central office could shed light to both sides.

turtlemama said...

Ditto for hospital administration. The best decisions for us as nurses were always made by those who had been away from the bedside for the shortest time.

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