Monday, February 8, 2016

Teacher Input: What would it really look like?



It’s an election year and we’ve just been provided with a plan through the Governor’s office asking for nominations to the new Governor’s Council on Educational Advancement.  The Council’s mission is to provide oversight to programs managed and funded through the Network for Quality Teaching and Learning established by the legislature.  The Network is in charge of and funds various programs including:  Common Core State Standards, teacher evaluations tied to high-stakes standardized testing, professional development, teacher mentoring, best practices for closing the achievement gap, early learning partnerships, recruitment of a diverse teaching force, and English Language Learners’ success.
            
Will educators finally be listened to, or will they be provided the usual “seat at the table” where they once again share in the poison wine?  

I would like to offer some suggestions as to what such a committee would look like:

·      Meetings should take place at a time where teachers can actually attend without having to plan for a substitute and incur personal costs and unpaid leave.

·      The majority of voting members of the 15-member council would be currently practicing educators, meaning those who deliver instruction.

·      The chair of the committee would be one of those educators.  The chair would be actively involved in setting the agenda and presentations would have to be approved by the voting members.

·      Voting members would not include representatives of any stakeholder organization that receives funds through the Network.

Pat Muller, Oregon teacher

Oregon Save Our Schools is committed to giving teachers and parents a public voice and would like to publish more parent and teacher opinion pieces about this and other topics on our blog. If you would like a piece published (with your name or anonymously) please send your piece to us at oregonsosinfo@gmail.com.

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