I would gladly give back my Excel award to have a voice back in education. JCPS has forgotten that education is not about awards, press coverage, or adults. It is not about politics, surveys, tests, or what furthers careers. It is the reason that teachers fight through the disrespected feeling to go to school in the morning and that is students. It is the reason we are screaming in the streets and holding protest signs. It is not about money, we give that away daily. It is simple: Our students deserve so much more from all of us.
I have been blessed to teach the most amazing people and get to watch them develop into people that I can be proud of. They inspire me daily and are the reason that I feel it is important to write this from the heart. Education is what teachers do daily…it is nurturing, caring, and getting to know the individuals in front of us.
JCPS administration if you want to change things in the district, it starts with the most important thing in the classroom…respect. You have to respect teachers to know the right tools to enhance student growth, we have to be able to respect the people making policies, and everyone needs to respect all students’ rights. All students deserve to be respected in school and not be turned into a number on a spread sheet. This means teachers need to have the power to keep all students safe and give consequences that teach students how to act and be a valuable member of society. Tests shouldn’t be used to tell students that they are inferior, but grades and teacher recommendations should be used to place students in programs.
We need to get back to what we do best and that is to collaborate as a district and turn education into something that should be celebrated and enjoyed. After all, as educators we should lead by example, so I need to speak up on behalf of my students. This district needs to be a functioning family again that put the needs of students first. If not, we will end up like the Detroit public school system in broken chaos.
Excel Teacher Who Wants to Be Heard
NOTE: While the author’s identity is protected here, they are not anonymous to Dear JCPS. Any board member wishing to address the concerns shared here can contact our administrators to make a connection.