It’s 364 days after my very first day as a real live professional, and I spent today in much the same way that I spent August 16th, 2010.
Our principal started the day by making a harrowing speech about how we’re the worst of the worst. It was quite graphic. “There are five stages to this process,” he said, speaking of federal accountability/school closure/what-have-you. “They had to invent a stage for us. We’re in stage 5B, they’ve called it. Stage 5B–we’re it.” I think it might have been intended to be motivating, or something? But it whatever the intent, the result was a vehement venting monologue.
The beginning of the day was the usual technical difficulties, miscommunications, and general frustration. A two-hour session on a class website that is not to be used during school hours. Administrators read verbatim from powerpoint novels that I realize now are probably years old, emphasizing and re-emphasizing the importance of policies and procedures they will not mention again until this time next year. (I’m not kidding–they read slides that directed us to see the textbook clerk to get our texts–we don’t even have a textbook clerk!)
There were multiple sexist lewd comments made during the discussion on sexual harrassment. I didn’t laugh. It felt like everyone else in the room did.
I’ve asked this before and I will ask it again: WHAT HAPPENED TO TEACHING? When did any of this become okay?!? Is this how you prepare a presentation? Is this how lead or participate in ANY sort of professional activity?
One day, all teachers in this nation will act like the professionals they are.