The Role of Admin and That of Teachers

With_Supes
Left to Right: Secretary of Education, California Jack OConnell, Me, Superintendent of San Bernardino County Herb Fischer.  2007

Everyone tends to go to pieces when the “suits” aka administration walks in ones classroom. You could be sitting, which can be fine as long as you’re teaching. The most ideal by their standards is that you’re standing, burning calories teacing the future of America. Never mind they may have been sitting all day at their desks processing complaints and categorizing taxpayer funds. You’re expected to be the professional, doing whatever you need to be doing to get every child to the expectation they set. Remember however that you have an intrinsic calling to what you do. You don’t need a suit to be important. You use all the materials at your disposal to help kids gain equal access to the core curriculum. You are the true professional and hero in my eyes.

Most districts have more teachers than mine but mine has about 300. The people who run the district office number at about 6-8. Of course, beyond them there are clerical workers and such but the higher administration number is about that small. They spend the money that taxpayers earn. They decide how much teachers can make and how much can be spent on the curriculum that they choose. Currently, all curriculum we are mandated to use is Common Core.

This is true even though entire districts are being sued because hordes of parents want it taken out of the school system. They claim it is too tricky. They want a straight ahead education for their child. These are real opinions, not made up by teachers who the district may claim do not want to change with the times. Without the use of our materials we have used for years, how can we fill in the mortar between the Common Core bricks? This is one question I might ask a suit. Perhaps I will get the chance someday. I see it was millions of dollars down the drain at the whim of a few people.

We need a mix of people at the table. Pick from the 300 teachers to make decisions like this. Doing 2 or 3 more years to get a PhD does not give you a deity perspective. Teachers like you are in the trenches every day. Be proud and continue to make decisions that benefit your students. Suits can be great when they include teachers. When they don’t, they are less likely to be in touch with what teaching is so keep that in mind. Teach with vision today and show the suits you are the backbone of what is going on. Even if they don’t see it in their slice of time they walk through, make sure you remeber it and know it.

Author: Damien Riley

Having been a public school teacher since 1997, I've gained valuable classroom experience. Sometimes a great tool is a dynamite lesson plan. These posts are from a real teaching journey. I hope they inspire you. Thanks for reading!

Leave a Reply