Wisconsin: “They” Did It!


How long has it been?  How long have I been writing about Wisconsin’s war on the teaching profession and the ridiculous notion that we have a “teacher shortage?”  Rhetorical I know.

Well today “they” did it.  “They” opened the door to deprofesssionalization and authorized the use of emergency licenses to address the “shortage” and placed our most vulnerable children in a defenseless position.

Instead of truly addressing the EXODUS of teachers and the miserable conditions driving teachers out of the profession “they” simply created a pathway into our classrooms for unlicensed and unqualified personnel.

Of course “they” won’t admit this.  In fact, “they” already have “talking points” in case someone dare question the integrity of devaluing the teaching profession.

Now let’s be very clear about how these emergency license rules will really play out in schools across the state.

  • The most qualified teachers will end up in the most affluent areas.
  • Emergency licensed teachers will end up in high poverty areas.
  • School districts with money will hire licensed teachers and require specialized licenses for teachers in fields such as special education.
  • School districts without money will hire emergency certified people and use the new emergency rules to get around the specialized license requirements for fields such as special education.
  • ALEC will have won another victory because the cost for teachers will be significantly reduced.
  • And over time, more and more license reductions will eventually result in a deprofessionalized field and our children will suffer as novices with no sense of the professional, ethical, social, and moral obligations required to be a teacher take over our classrooms.

But who is “they?”  I bet you think it was the legislature or our governor.  Nope.  Unlike Utah and Arizona—where the legislature and the governor did away with the need for teaching licenses—”they” consisted of representatives of mostly “us.”

See that’s how it works here in Wisconsin.  Before the legislature and the governor can do crappy things to “us,” “we” do it to ourselves.  I’m told that this is much better in the end because if “we” don’t do it to ourselves it will be much worse if and when the legislature and the governor does it to us.  If you find this logic confusing welcome to my world—Wisconsin.  A place where self flogging is better than being flogged.

Oh.  Who are “they” and “we?” Look at the bottom of the “talking points.”