2010-10-01 / Letters

Teachers Today Are Not The Same

Dear Editor,

The public has finally realized that the ‘emperor is wearing no clothing.”

Mayor Bloomberg and his cronies have finally been exposed as the sham artists they are. The DOE, as it exists now, is a miserable failure as per the latest reading and math tests.

The reasons?

Teachers are substandard. Back in the 50s and 60s, teachers came from the top 25 percent of their graduating classes. Due to the poor salaries, change in the status of working mothers, accessibility to more prestigious careers, financial necessity, etc., they now come out of the bottom 25 percent of their classes. Hence, many teachers lack the core of knowledge to do an “all around” good job. Witness the teacher who told her class to draw a really big circle and make it 390 degrees.

Teachers no longer teach. They are pigeon-holed and told what, where and how to present the canned les- sons. You are born a teacher. To tell a teacher what he or “ she must teach a certain style and use certain words using the latest “dog and pony” technique is like telling Picasso that he must paint like Van Gogh. If you are truly a teacher, that is an insult and a detriment to place constraints on your natural ability – not to mention that those game plans and lessons change yearly.

Children are harder to entertain. Due to the limitless technology, children expect to be instantly gratified in the classroom. Teachers must be entertainers to a certain extent and it gets worse year by year. In order to teach, you must “grab your audience.” Hence, behavior problems escalate each year.

The school day is now nearly exclusively devoted to reading, math and testing strategies. This is a huge mistake and it shortchanges children. They should be exposed to all of the subjects traditionally taught in a school, including social studies, science, art, music, etc.

Too many children are promoted when they should not be. It seems that “No Child Left Behind” means that everybody is promoted from grade to grade even when they don’t make the grade.

And, education is not a primary concern in many Rockaway homes.

I view the DOE as a huge ship with only its nose sticking out of the water. Its inevitable sinking is right around the corner. I taught for 32 years in Bed Stuy and Mill Basin. I’m glad that I did my years when teachers were recognized as having some intellect and input. I never could have survived this “new and improved” environment.

MARY O’LEARY

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