“I wanna play teacher and I’m in charge.”


Since posting my blog yesterday some people have taken offense to the fact that I satirized Governor Walker’s proposal to allow “real life experience” and the passing of a simple test to become a teacher in Wisconsin.

What if I said this:

We have absolutely no need for this proposal. If you have a degree and want to teach there are already multiple programs across the state that can prepare your for life in a classroom as a professional educator in 18- 24 months (Accelerated teacher certification).

That’s why this is nothing more than an attack on the teaching profession and an attempt to make the case that “anybody” can teach. Silly given the mounds of research that demonstrate conclusively that these types of programs typically send people into the hardest to teach classrooms and that the attrition rate is often less than a year.

Sorry but sending experimental teachers into work with ANY child is absurd and actually harmful. No one ever seems to want to ask this question first.

How will doing this benefit kids?

Instead we ask how can something benefit me or hurt my political enemy. Silly adults having arguments about what’s best for themselves. This is the problem with all the “talk” about education. Every proposal to “reform” education is about adults’ warped perceptions of how they want the world to be instead of what’s best for kids?

As I have stated time and time again, “ALL politicians should be barred from making any legislation that screws with the education of other people’s children.” Why? Because they have demonstrated time and time again over the last 30 years that they have no ability to actually seek professional guidance or use empirical research to inform legislation that will impact the education of other people’s children.

As to the proposal put forth by the governor please answer these questions? What problem is this solving? Is there an identified shortage of teachers? And most importantly, how will this impact the education of other people’s children?

And now let’s take this in another direction. Why, over the last 20 years, have mainly republicans interfered in the education of teachers by requiring more specific course work, more standardized content tests, more time in classrooms, higher GPA’s, and now another performance based high stakes test before you can get a license to teach?

In other words, republicans and education reformers have supposedly insisted on higher standards for future teachers. However, now the same people are now saying that as long as you have “life experience” and can pass one test you can have a license to “play” teacher. Really?

Do we need high standards to ensure that every child has a qualified teacher? Or do we really just want to send anybody that wants to “give teaching a try” the opportunity to damage OTHER PEOPLE”S KIDS?