Where should we be focusing? What do you think the priorities of our leaders really are?
If I had to say where the focus should be, it'd be the following:
1. Discipline - some of our schools are out of control. Students can do nearly anything, as often as they please, with no repercussions from the school. Administrators are too worried about blowback from the district. Teachers are hamstrung by excessive paperwork. The problem is, the kids know it.
2. Improved support for teachers - There are so many expectations of teachers and they're going up every day. What's missing are meaningful and easily accessible development opportunities that are being replaced by more paperwork and one size fits all weekly Professional Development.
3. More teacher autonomy - Teachers need to be allowed to teach. if something is successful, then it should be encouraged. Teachers are being constrained by teaching norms in a district where the students we teach are anything but. Teachers are forced to pass kids they know don't deserve it because they don't have the freedom to grade their own way or test their own way. Let teachers teach. Let teachers grade.