I've been a public school teacher for nearly 25 years. I have a passion for teaching young children how to read. But the unprofessionalism of my colleagues, the ridiculous demands to teach things other than academics, and the unrealistic demands of continual testing (tell me how all children need to perform above the 50th percentile! That is a mathematical impossibility but our former governor declared it as a goal! Um, last time I checked half the students will always be below the 50th percentile!) are combining to drive me out of the profession. I will miss my students, but not my occupation!
Nearly two years ago, U.S. News & World Report came out with a story titled "Educators Implicated in Atlanta Cheating Scandal." It reported that "for 10 years, hundreds of Atlanta public school teachers and principals changed answers on state tests in one of the largest cheating scandals in U.S. history." More than three-quarters of the 56 Atlanta schools investigated had cheated on the National Assessment of Educational Progress test, sometimes called the national report card. Cheating orders came from school administrators and included brazen acts such as teachers reading answers aloud during the test and erasing incorrect answers. One teacher told...
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