Dear Louisiana Educator Readers:
Terri Guillory, by every measure including the new COMPASS system (She scored "highly effective") is another true master teacher that has decided to retire early because of some of the destructive policies of our governor, our legislature, our DOE and BESE. She quite correctly felt a need to write a letter to her education bosses who pushed her into early retirement to clearly describe for them the polices and attitudes that have driven her to give up her chosen profession. I hope they have all carefully read these very thoughtful letters. The following are excerpts from her letters to BESE and Superintendent White,
To BESE members:
“You and the legislature just blindly signed on to whatever Jindal touted. You asked no questions. You believed many lies. You were willing to throw us under the bus. You watched as we begged to be heard. You ignored us. You smugly observed scores of teachers leaving the profession earlier than planned due to stress. You cared so little for the true mission of education that yours were the hands eagerly dismantling it.
“If only you had respected us enough to hear our concerns, to take into account that we are the boots on the ground, who know what teaching really consists of. If only you could have admitted that the problem is not with educators, but with society itself --- and that the programs you have put in place have no merit or worth.”
Now here is what Ms Guillory had to say to John White:
On Common Core: “I can see future promise and benefits of using this curriculum. These new standards seem fuller” (Notice that Ms Guillory is not one bit taken in by the claim that these are not curricula but simply standards. There is no question in her mind that the standards and especially the PARCC absolutely dictate the curriculum. In this system, teachers are forced to teach to the test!)
“However teachers are scrambling on nights and weekends to locate sources and materials to use. This is building a curriculum from scratch----. Imagine if a surgeon had to be responsible for gathering and organizing the surgical instruments for her surgeries and do so at her expense and on her own time. Teachers do have lives other than their school lives---- In my thirty years I have NEVER put in so much time gathering and preparing as I have done this year. I have had very little guidance and questions have been answered in a conflicting manner. It is not acceptable that teachers have to spend so much time and money cobbling together lessons.