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Sunday, October 4, 2015

ELA teacher vents about the new curriculum

From a reader, a veteran teacher in the district,

25 books for 80 kids.... each kid is supposed to have their own so that can make it home...the curriculum call for a portion of the reading to be done at we are naturally way behind... and then demeaned by the district for being behind.

Unit 1 assessment.... literally makes no sense.... they hired some third graders to cut and paste in from Engage NY..... it was a disaster.

The time it takes to implement these lessons is actually double the time...everyone is behind...and everyone is getting crap form Bays (assistant superintendent) and her minions

Chris, I am not one of those complain about everything teachers...I work hard...I have one numerous awards for my teaching, but this new curriculum is BAD... I mean really, really bad.

Teachers are afraid to speak up and when they do, they get a visit from the district and they don’t come to offer support.


  1. It's awful. The miscommunication between the head of ELA and the regional superintendents is ridiculous. Multiple times at Teacher Academy, we were told journals are to be source books, use them as you see fit. And yet what did we get dinged on by Bays? Journals. Multiple times at Teacher Academy we were told to make this curriculum our own, so I do but then I get questioned that I must not have taught it because there's nothing in their workbooks. They don't trust us to do our jobs. There are mistakes ALL over this curriculum but hope I'm just expected to teach it as is and hope for the best come April. I'm a veteran teacher who used to love her job. Now I'm sitting in the parking lot, dreading to get my day started. This culture of fear will do nothing to help our students, at risk or otherwise.

  2. This is absolutely the worst school year I have ever taught. I dread going into work each day to see what fiasco has been created. The curriculum is horrendous and poorly designed. It makes so many assumptions about our children. The biggest one is that they all come to us fully prepared each day and completely on grade level. It assumes our 8 year old students are so self aware that they can reflect on how they are doing and what they need to work on with building their reading stamina or fluency. It assumes that we have hours to plan and prep everyday. They assime that every single student comes to school every single day mentally and emotionally prepared. The worst is that the directors absolutely believe that if we just "buy in" and "properly plan and prepare" for these lessons that we should have no problems. At this point, we as teachers, have no say in the decisions or planning for our classrooms. Although administration tells us we can "do what you know is best". We really can't because let's face it, any district official walking into your room is just looking for their precious logo at the top of each child's paper and for us to put on the dog and pony show to make them feel like they have done something. They could really just hire anyone off the street and hand them all of their required lessons, paperwork, etc and point them in the way of their classroom. Our experience and expertise are no longer needed here in Duval county. The morale has to be at an all time low and everyone has a defeated look on their face. I'm terrified to think of what the year will look like as it progresses. It's not looking good and I see a lot of good teachers leaving ASAP.

  3. I found this a month later! I am also ELA and while I was told everyone was behind schedule, I was treated like I was extremely behind and that it was shocking. I also had the 70 something kids and 25 books problem. BEST yet, we don't read it during the lesson because it was read during their "slushie" time. Yes, that is a word. A word to mean wasted or useless time outside of literacy minutes. I asked and asked from the moment I saw curriculum in June about how would 3 classes all use the 25 books before lunch, before school, at dismissal (ha), or at home. During the last week of teacher's academy, it was though there was never another teacher or district specialist who had noticed this problem. Maybe, math is an issue for our leaders. I am just so annoyed to find out now, that I was not the only teacher asking or struggling to solve this problem. I was completely left to figure it out by myself! Ugh! All i can point out is that when you don't make plans that work, well...they don't work. You can threaten all you want and while we may make it look good, in the end it still didn't work.