Monday, May 04, 2009

Let's Debate

Who should be accountable for a student's success in high school? (Check out the comment section of the linked post)


Anonymous said...

Is graduating HS and completing an education the same thing?

Isn't success more than just receiving a piece of paper?

Miss Eyre said...

I try to reinforce the idea that the KIDS are responsible for their education all the time.

e.g.: "Wow, I got a 95 on my project! Thanks, Miss Eyre!"

"Don't thank me," I say. "Thank yourself for making sure you understood the assignment and working hard on it."


e.g.: "Aww, Miss Eyre, why you have to fail me on that quiz?"

"I didn't fail you," I say. "Did you do the homework?"

"Well, no--"

"Did you study?"


"Did you take advantage of me being around in the morning and at lunch to help you?"


"Then who did the failing here?"

Joel Klein said...

It's the teachers who should be accountable. If only they worked harder and had higher expectations, everyone would pass.

Mr. Walmart said...

The unions should be accountable. They are the demise of education.

Anonymous said...

Who will be accountable for graduating students who know nothing?

Anonymous said...

Who will be accountable for graduating students who know nothing?

The Taxpayer
The Federal Government
The Local City Government

The individual who struggles through life... etc. etc. etc.

Who is held accountable for the teachers who couldn't care less whether students are learning are not? (People who check this blog most likely don't fall into this category. Those who do, probably can't use a computer.)

Pissedoffteacher said...

Just because a teacher cannot use a computer does not mean they do not care.

Your comment seems to be an age discrimination one since all the young are computer capable.

Once again, teachers are being blamed.

Why not start holding the kids accountable for their actions?

Anonymous said...

Who will hold the students accountable?

Anonymous said...

I don't know how a reference to technology is age discrimination. Anyone commited to life long learning immediately adapted to utlizing technology and found ways to implement into their teaching practice in one form or another.

I find it sad that we continue to make excuses for adults who are inept and lazy. This goes for young and old. I know many young people who are lazy and simply make no effort and older folks who do all the cutting edge technology things that are available.

I just want to know how people would consider holding kids accountable? Make them stay in high school until they turn into drop outs? That's the model we have been using for the last 50 years or so and all it has resulted in is the highest drop out rate this country has ever seen.

The only people you can hold accountable are the people being paid to educate students and run the schools they attend. Right from the very top on down to the secretary. Everyone who gets a paycheck is accountable for those students.

You can't control other factors so placing blame on them is just that... placing blame.

Pissedoffteacher said...

1. Technology does not make anyone a good teacher. The school system has never even bothered to give teachers any training on computers, as other industries have given their employees. Until a few months ago, the teachers of Packemin HS did not even have access to computers.

Life long learning involves many things, not just technology. Failure to learn it or use it is not laziness.

We are graduating students who can barely read and cannot do arithmetic. I was at a meeting at a local community college where I heard things that made me want to jump out a window. We are pushing them from one building to another but they are uneducated, just the same.

I am being paid to teach but, I have no control over the students natural ability (or lack of), their home lives, their study skills, etc. Youcannot hold me or anyone else accountable for things we have no control over.

It is not always a matter of blaming the students, it is a matter of being realistic and facing the fact that some just can't do it.

Maybe the model from 50 years ago wasn't so bad. People didn't graduate college with meaningless degrees. People graduated high school prepared for life when they did not want to go on to college.

Anonymous said...

50 years ago it was ok to have students go to school in the factory model of education. Graduating High School and not going to college was ok because of all the manufacturing jobs that were available.

Just as it was ok 50 to 100 years before that when students went to school on an agrarian calendar. Went to school in a one room school house and topics related to agriculture were expected. Those few small students who were exceptional ended up as doctors, laywers, teachers, etc.

So here we are in the 21st Century where all manufacturing jobs have gone overseas. Where white collar jobs like accounting, engineering, etc are now being outsourced as well.

Let's have an understanding of where we are and where we are going in order to put into perspective of what needs to get done. And if schools aren't reflecting this dynamic then as much as people don't want to hear this... you can't hold students accountable. Everyone being paid to educate our youth has to be held accountable. And if you don't want to be held accountable - Don't go into education as a profession.

Pissedoffteacher said...

If kids are not accountable for their own actions, its time for me to get out of teaching. If youare plaming all the problems in schools on undynamic teachers, I have no answer for you. I guess I am one of those that shouldn't be in the field. Maybe it is time for me to go.

With philosophies like this, I am sad for the future of this country.

Anonymous said...

I think the idea of holding a kid accountable for his actions is not even the debate. A child is always being held accountable every time he brings home his report card. How accountable & by who is something that is very difficult for a school to have control over.

You want to make a 13-18 kid, teenager, child, youngster, etc. accountable by keeping him/her in High School for 5-7 years? Simply does not work! Data shows that.

The whole accountability word is the real issue! What does that even mean????? It is defined as:
an obligation or willingness to accept responsibility or to account for one's actions

No one is saying you can't teach students about responsibility and their responsibility to accept their actions.

But what about the adults???!!!! Who are getting paid? How can you not hold them accountable? I just don't get that... of course they are accountable... they are in the classroom every day. But that doesn't mean they don't work hard, that doesn't mean they don't try...

What it means is that they are responsbile for honing their professional practice to make sure they have a loaded toolbox of instructional strategies to help engage students. And when things aren't working, they dont' BLAME the kids ... they look at their practice to see what they could do differently.

If you think all this instructional strategy talk is a crock... then with that attitude you should still believe riding around in horse & buggy. Going to the doctor and him preforming a diagnosis without using x-rays, etc. Get my point.

Accountability is shared. BY EVERYONE. From the Mayor -> Chancelor -> Principal -> Teacher -> Student.

Which ever way you want to organize that list... but everyone is accountable.

You can not escape the fact that world today is very different then it was 10 years ago. Vastly different then it was 50 years. Completely different then it was 100 years ago.

Yet our schools systems are models of educational philosphies establised well over 100 years ago.

See Horace Mann! I am ranting now... and this is your blog. However, no need to be sad... nostaligic maybe... sad no.

You are living through one of the most exciting times in education and educational reform. You can say you lived through it... and had an impact on it. You would be surprised how your blog has had an impact on educational reform.

Let me know what you think of this article:

Take care... JK

Pissedoffteacher said...

Nobody is saying teachers shouldn't be doing all we can do to help our students but holding teachers accountable for things not in our control is insane and thinking technology is the answer is even worse. The best teaching techniques include a "human" touch, not a computer touch.

Read this for a teacher's point of view on ARIS.

Anonymous said...

Au contraire, mon amie

I almost think exactly the opposite!

I don't think computers are the answers to our problems. I just know they are the tools that our students will need to utilize in their futures. And the more effectively they can use it, the more they know how to utilize it as a tool & not a toy the better they will be for the future.

I believe in teaching students to creatively think, have them critically think, be able to cmmunicate effectively, think for themselves, learn to love to learn so they become lifelong learners. I beleive all this should but does not have to everyday include utilizing technology. That's the students anyway...

I believe students should be helped to understand the world around them, and shown how what they learn in school is directly relatd to future careers and college majors.

I believe in students seeing the relevancy of their education...learning how to work as a team, collabortively, respect their peers and their elders. I can go on & on & on

ARIS is just a tool! Exactly that a tool. It should give some insights on student acheivement. It could help explain barriers to student learning, it could help give a teacher an idea on how to approach a student to help make them more successful. And jus that insight early on, may make the difference in whether a student is scuccssful or not.

However, NOTHING, and I repeat NOTHING, will ever, EVER take the place of a caring, committed, emphathic educator.

Unfortunately... that can not be taught. Unfortunately, they don't sell it in a bottle that can be purchased and injected into a person. Either you are or you aren't. Either you have it or you don't. However, you can still be a decent teacher if you don't have those innate qualities. You can be a skillful teacher. You can be a successful teacher.

But a teacher who HAS those qualities and is skillful is LOVED by their students. They remember lessons they learned years after they have left school. They never forget their teachers.

Unfortunately, their are those teachers who are not skillful and are not committed etc. A student who is stuck with a couple of those teachers may never recover. May learn to hate school. May give up because they feel they are dumb.

So I say again... do I think technology is the answer. NO!!!!!

Do I think it is a tool that can help... absolutely. Do our students live in a world where they are surrounded by technology. I am sure you would agree that they do.

Pissedoffteacher said...


Anonymous said...

Boy have times changed. When I went to 911 Flatbush Ave. High in Brooklyn (the actual address) I had Miss B for Spanish. She was mean ,inconsiderate, and a witch in every sense of the word. When my mother went up for open school night I warned her. When she came home I ran to the door and said "Was I right? isn't she the pits. Mom said---everything you said about her is true---BUT SHE IS NOT CHANGING AND IF YOU WANT TO GET A DECENT MARK IN THE CLASS YOU HAVE TO CHANGE. And I did. I survived Miss B. Times have changed. Parents must be held accountable. I never saw the relevance of some courses I took but they were hurdles I had to get over. Many students today know their teachers are afraid to fail them and act accordingly.