Sunday, August 3, 2014
Florida must stop injuring the teaching profession.
A study from the Alliance for Excellent Education said Florida loses more than 130 million a year because teachers either leave the profession or move to new schools. Imagine what Education could do with and additional 130 million dollars though to be honest I am surprised the number isn’t higher considering all the damage our leaders in Tallahassee have done to the profession over the years.
There was a time when the teaching profession was respected if not revered, instead now it is often ridiculed and blamed for societies problems despite the fact teachers are given all of the responsibility and none of the authority while having to endure a lack of resources and policies that hamstring the profession.
Over the last few years Tallahassee has stripped teachers of work protections, taken three percent of their salary to balance the states books, forced them into an evaluation system that often evaluates them on children they have never taught and the department of education, a group who both touts VAM scores and has a lot riding on their success admits are inaccurate more than a third of the time.
It’s not low salaries, though Florida has some of the lowest in the nation, that is forcing teachers out of the profession but willful policies from Tallahassee that are forcing teachers to leave. There was a time when kids might never have a rookie teacher, now it’s more likely they may never have an experienced teacher as the profession has been reduced.
We can no longer look at what is happening to the teaching profession in Florida and shrug our shoulders. Instead we need to stand up for the profession and that means standing against the leadership in Tallahassee because its not just teachers that suffer but students and our state too.