Showing posts with label Linda Butler. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Linda Butler. Show all posts

Friday, January 27, 2012

It appears the BOE is tracking curriculum changes

So, if you are not pleased with how it's going, be sure and let them know. The following is excerpted from an Jan/Feb 2012 article on the Illinois Association of School Boards website entitled "Reading: Pumping up the Basics"...

The reason why the BOE meeting schedule was changed (from the article)
In order to keep track of the curriculum changes that are being implemented, the District 150 board has modified its meeting schedule. While the board still meets twice a month, one meeting is devoted to business with a 10-minute slot allotted for teacher or student presentations. The other meeting allots from 30 minutes to two hours for individual program presentations and discussion topics. These in-depth explanations also give the community the transparency and information that they have been asking for.

The District’s literacy plan is COMPLETE (from the article)
With the beginning of the 2011-12 school years, District 150 embarked on an orchestrated quest to pump up its reading scores on the Illinois Standard Achievement Test (ISAT). The multi-pronged approach is supported by teachers and tutors in the classroom all the way up through the superintendent and the school board.
 “We really want the board to see how this is working; Becky (Lindholm) and Shameika (Sykes-Patterson) can go through programs with them and not be concerned about the amount of time allotted.” Board President Butler
The basics of the change involve a daily dedicated 90 minutes of reading instruction throughout the elementary grades and an additional 45 minutes of grouped reading work every day. While the 90-minute reading block was in place before, it has now become sacrosanct. No student can be pulled out of that 90-minute reading block — not for speech, not for band, not for anything.

Superintendent Lathan knows that in order to make a difference, the district — from the board down to the teachers — must follow the plan that has been created. “This has to be done with fidelity,” Lathan said. To achieve that fidelity in the classroom, the district is providing professional development for teachers and principals on the new balanced literacy program, doing walk-throughs in classrooms to observe progress and implementing coaching where help is needed.

The district’s ambitious three-year strategic plan shows much work remains to be completed by 2014. But the important strategy of creating a new literacy program is checked off as complete. Read complete article here…

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

What's really going on with District 150 teachers?

Comments left on the blog of late, indicate that teachers in District 150 are highly frustrated with the current state of the District. When we are witnessing teachers who absolutely love teaching losing their jobs and/or considering leaving the profession, it's a clear indicator that the situation must be pretty dire.

From what I am reading, it appears that teachers are moving towards forming their own type of District Watch. The education landscape is changing so drastically, that teachers and parents alike, need to be as vigilant as possible to insure that all voices are being heard, as we set standards for the future of our schools. It’s a good thing if teachers are actively working on having a real voice in the District's decision making process.

The post below is from a commenter called "teachingrocks".

teachingrocks said...

It is hard to be one of the teachers who was in the trenches last year and kicked to the curb this year.

I continue to repeating the truth that some of these schools are OUT OF CONTROL. By being upset at raising suspension numbers, things are NOT going to change. Students will continue to act out and now will get even less discipline because the numbers "are so bad".

These suspension numbers are easy to manipulate if you keep the student in an ACE room and don't put that in the system or send them home and don't report it to the atendance system, etc. I am worried because if the numbers are worse this year and people are upset about it, it seems like even LESS is going to be done at a time when the teachers must have MORE support in dealing with these MAJOR behavior issues.

A few students in each classroom are robbing all students of their education. Emerge was right when she was asking parents to speak up. That's a place to start. 150 has the alternative school so let's start using it. There are children who should NOT be in a traditional classroom. Even the word traditional in 150 isn't what it used to be.

The teachers are working so very hard to create an environment which meets the needs of all the students in the classroom. They are dealing with things in some of the schools which are not the norm across the district. The revolving door of people in the home, students who strive to grow up and go to jail, the abuse, the drugs, the shootings, etc. Believe me, teachers have adjusted through the years to respond to the change as best they can. This CHRONIC, OUT OF CONTROL behavior is not something teachers can control or adjust on their own. And yet, with the lack of support from the office and above, they are attempting to do just that because that is what they are told they HAVE to do.

If you are "lucky" enough to have tenure, you will keep your job--maybe not in the current school or grade level. If you are a teacher who is dedicated to hold all students to the same standards, won't let children run wild in your room, and demand (but don't receive) some sort of consequence (after you've implented four of five of your own and talked to the parent) from the office and have no tenure----enjoy the time off during this school year because your bags are packed and you are labled unable to control the classroom. It is heartbreaking...and what I am doing.

I have no chance to speak up and say my peace. I am already someone who is having a hard time trying to get back into the classroom. What are my chances of being hired again as a full-time teacher if I have the audacity to speak the truth of what is happening in the classrooms in front of the school board. Trust me, there are people who keep track of who is "causing trouble" by not just shutting up and keeping kids in their classroom no matter what. If they have any opportunity to get rid of you, they will.
Wed., November 16, 2011

teachingrocks said...

I am not making a statement that every teacher who isn't employed this year should be. There are legitimate reasons for getting rid of teachers and there are some teachers in their classrooms now who shouldn't be there. The union is in sad shape and it is so depressing the teachers have noone to turn to regarding the current situations at some schools.

I can continue to monitor and contribute to the blog. I gather information and try to let people know what is really happening.

I am not some anonymous nut who has no experience about what I am talking. I am a teacher. I am dedicated to giving children the best opportunity possible to make something of their lives--let them know they are important to me if noone else in their lives lets them know. I want to make this world a better place by empowering these kids with the knowledge someone is in their court and rooting for them. THIS is the goal of almost every teacher in these classrooms and their hands are being tied by a few families who can't (won't) control their children and by administrators who won't (can't) control their student body.

Wed., November 16, 2011