Category Archives: Indiana State Teachers Association

Hot Air

Those Who Can…

I’ll be making a lot of teachers mad today. That’s nothing new; some four and a half decades ago I was an unruly little shit terrorizing any number of trained experts in the art of controlling and forming the minds of feral beastlings like me.

The Indiana Board of Ed last week voted to allow non-professional teachers to teach in state schools. Professional teachers, naturally, are up in arms.

The Board sez it would like to okay something called Career Workplace Specialists, folks who’ve made their daily bread in specific fields and who then would be qualified to teach our kids that stuff. Well, your kids. I don’t have any. You’re welcome.

Anyway, the state teachers union thinks this is the worst thing since MERS. Union boss Teresa Meredith told WFIU reporter Brandon Smith that teachers need intensive “pedagogy training” before they can be allowed to face a classroom full of brats like I was.

Blackboard Jungle

From The Movie “Blackboard Jungle”

That quote alone is enough to convince me I’m going to side with the Board. The teaching profession has become a priestly caste with an obfuscating language all its own. The entrenched pro teaching people forget that we’re all teachers; the very nature of civilization forces each and every adult to be a life-certified pedagogista.

This is not to say that pro-teachers haven’t learned a thing or two about imparting knowledge, getting kids to think critically, and preventing impromptu riots from breaking out. Problem is, it seems the teaching profession has been, for all intents and purposes, restricted only to the third pillar of those qualifications. What with a rigid common core, teaching to the test, and the alarming popular distaste for science and empirical facts, teachers are hamstrung these days.

Let’s be clear: the teaching profession, by and large, has opposed the general trend away from getting kids to learn how to think and toward producing standardized, docile little graduate lambs. Sadly, the efforts of teachers unions and the pedagogical academia have had next to no effect on the educational paradigm of turning out kids who know how to spit back facts but have absolutely no acumen for analyzing and critiquing. So, it can be said the only thing teachers unions have left to fight for is their own jobs.

And now, they fear, they’re going to be losing them to people who aren’t professional teachers.

But, as I say, we’re all teachers. And I’d rather have, say, a professional chemist teaching me chemistry than a person who finds it necessary to use the term pedagogy.

Hear Charlotte Here

Here’s your link to hear the WFHB Daily Local News feature on my Big Talk interview with Charlotte Zietlow.

Zietlow

Charlotte Zietlow (Photo: David Snodgress/Herald-Times)

The latest issue of The Ryder magazine hits the streets today, carrying the entire hour-long chat I had with the doyenne of the Democratic Party here in Bloomington and Monroe County. The piece will go up on The Ryder website in about a week.

Tune in to WFHB and read The Ryder each month to catch the long and short versions of the monthly Big Talk series. And stay right here on The Electron Pencil for updates on who I’ll be interviewing next.

 

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