A Union County teacher who also toiled in Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools and who previously taught in New Mexico and Oregon has submitted her resignation in a letter that made its way through my Facebook feed. Anybody who knows a teacher has heard some of her complaints. Here are a few:
"I refuse to be led by a top-down hierarchy that is completely detached from the classrooms for which it is supposed to be responsible.
"I will not spend another day under the expectations that I prepare every student for the increasing numbers of meaningless tests.
"I will not spend another day wishing I had some time to plan my fantastic lessons because administration comes up with new and inventive ways to steal that time, under the guise of PLC meetings or whatever. I’ve seen successful PLC development. It doesn’t look like this.
"I will not spend another day wondering what menial, administrative task I will hear that I forgot to do next. I’m far enough behind in my own work.
"I will not spend another day in a district where my coworkers are both on autopilot and in survival mode. Misery loves company, but I will not be that company.
I refuse to subject students to every ridiculous standardized test that the state and/or district thinks is important. I refuse to have my higher-level and deep thinking lessons disrupted by meaningless assessments (like the EXPLORE test) that do little more than increase stress among children and teachers, and attempt to guide young adolescents into narrow choices.
"I totally object and refuse to have my performance as an educator rely on “Standard 6.” It is unfair, biased, and does not reflect anything about the teaching practices of proven educators.
"I refuse to watch my coworkers being treated like untrustworthy slackers through the overbearing policies of this state, although they are the hardest working and most overloaded people I know.
"I refuse to watch my district’s leadership tell us about the bad news and horrific changes coming towards us, then watch them shrug incompetently, and then tell us to work harder.
"I refuse to watch my students slouch under the weight of a system that expects them to perform well on EOG tests, which do not measure their abilities other than memorization and application and therefore do not measure their readiness for the next grade level—much less life, career, or college.
"I refuse to hear any more about how important it is to differentiate our instruction as we prepare our kids for tests that are anything but differentiated. This negates our hard work and makes us look bad."
Want to read the rest? Click here to read the letter.