Tuesday, April 21, 2009

No Child Left Behind

As a teacher, I am very familiar with the No Child Left Behind Act. I am really struggling with this issue right now because I am being told to pass students who are not passing my class. Why are they not passing? L-A-Z-I-N-E-S-S and P-R-O-C-R-A-S-T-I-N-A-T-I-O-N. I am bending over backwards for these kids and I get NOTHING in return but a bunch of whining and complaining. What I want to know is, do the people who made up this act want a nurse who can't function properly or gives treatments late? Do they want a CPA who can't do the math to figure their taxes? A daycare worker who doesn't know the first thing about proper toy selection for their charges? I am a Career Technology teacher in the health care field. My students can sit for their CNA certification after the completion of my program. If I am being forced to pass them, how can I ethically say they are capable to taking a program such as this???

I'm curious to hear your thoughts....maybe we can make a difference somehow!


  1. No Child Left Behind bothers me. Personally, I homeschool my children, but I understand that it's not for everyone.

    But the NCLB groupies want to push everyone along at the same rate, and are more concerned with being in the bracket of schools that gets good test results, so there is more emphasis on passing a test than on learning anything.

    Not every child learns the same way or at the same rate, and test results rarely reflect actual comprehension of things.

    As for lazy students, there is absolutely no excuse for the higher-ups to insist that they get passed. If they procrastinate on a job they'll get fired. If they procrastinate paying bills they will get evicted or have their electricity turned off. Passing them now only makes the school look good, but does not prepare them in any way for real life.

    And yet because of NCLB the pressure is on the school system to have all these kids passing, regardless of whether they are competent or have done the work.

    I agree with you that it is an unacceptable practice. As for what can be done about it, if more teachers like you would stand up for their principles, and more parents would get involved in their children's educations, I think that the system would stand a chance.

    Sadly, however, that is not always the case. And that is one of the many reasons I have chosen to homeschool.

  2. I, too, personally homeschool my children for this reason. Isn't it ironic that I teach in public school to know that I don't want my kids here?

  3. Okay, first of all, they should rename it to No Teacher Left... because that is what it is going to boil down to. We have watered down education to the point that it is not really education, it is glorified babysitting with activities (and half of those are not finished).

    I came into the profession 12 years ago, and I was in an alternative school. To be honest, those kids worked harder than my accelerated children do to some degree. They listened, they were attentive, and they actually cared what I thought. Today, I have to compete with IPods, MP3 Players, Texting, phones, twitter, MySpace, and anything else you can think of. I have decided that if I were to tape myself and send it out to MySpace and Facebook, I might actually get a response. I can't even rap for them and keep their attention.

    My sister homeschools, and for years I thought it was awful, but I completely understand why someone would want to do it. I also know that if Georgia will ever come around to the 21st Century and allow students to participate in sports etc... then we will have a whole lot more students. I mean real homeschooling though, not things like Faith Academy, or things that you can pay and get a degree, but those parents who truly sit down and make their children do work, I admire them b/c I wouldn't have the patience, and I am a teacher.

    I think that law makers need to look up the word competent and put it in their blackberrys and look at it every time they go to text, e-mail or whatever it is they do at the capital...b/c it sure isn't working for them... How can they think that by pushing more legislation, and then cutting education by over a billion dollars, they are helping anyone???????