Opinion: This was not a tranquil school year, but i’m not ready to give up yet

Barth Keck is an English teacher and assistant football coach who also teaches courses in journalism and media literacy at Haddam-Killingworth High School. Email Barth here.

Elizabeth Natale did Connecticut residents a huge favor with her viral Why I Want to Give Up Teaching” op-ed in The Hartford Courant earlier this year. In short, she crystallized the frustrations of teachers and students amid the substantial changes in public education.

Before any teacher could say, “I quit,” state leaders decided to “give school districts the flexibility to delay the new teacher evaluation system.” Shortly thereafter, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy “used his executive authority to create a 25-member task force to identify the challenges presented by the (Common Core) standards.”

While no one expects Connecticut’s education reform to disappear, all of this activity raised public awareness of a three-headed monster: the implementation of the Common Core, the rollout of tests by the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC), and the launch of data-oriented, performance-evaluation systems.

It was not a tranquil school year — a fact chronicled vividly by Natale. Frankly, it was the most challenging year of my 23 years in the classroom.

See the complete story at CT News Junkie.


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