Jessica Marshall | Chicago Reader

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Re: “Mayor Rahm and the f-bomb: a critical study

Hey "realistic parent" - are we racing to the bottom? Because everyone doesn't have a pension we all should not have one? Where does this logic take us? I have several friends who work in the corporate world; their extra degrees make them extra-marketable and thus earn them higher salaries. Those with more experience get paid because they know their jobs. This same logic should apply to teachers. I have a master's degree and 6 more years of experience than the kid who walks into the classroom fresh from teacher training. And while it doesn't mean that new teacher won't eventually be a great teacher, you don't start out being one from day one. And while I'm a decent teacher, I know that there is still much to learn as I look at my colleagues with 15 years under their belts. The whole eliminating step and lane increases is smoke and mirrors. Part of the effort to get rid of tenure but also to de-professionalize the profession. And because everyone has been a student they all think they know what it takes to be a teacher. Teaching is an art form, a dance. It is a profession that requires you to be "on", to know what you're talking about, to know how to talk to students, to know how to even "trick" the most reluctant learners, to discover ways to make students passionate and engaged with curricula. This is no easy task and requires 50-60 hour weeks, weekends full of planning and collaborating and grading, and it is most of all a labor of love. If I were not so in love with my career and my students and their families I would've left the profession by now and used my Ivy League credentials elsewhere. Instead I choose to stay exactly where I am and fight for the best education for all of our city's children; not just those in selective enrollment schools. I wake up every day hating the system that I work for but loving the children and colleagues who still show up every day despite the disrespect and callousness that your post displays "realistic parent".

55 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Jessica Marshall on 04/18/2012 at 9:49 AM

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