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Sunday, February 21, 2016

Superintendent Vitti laments, only is we could find and keep great teachers. (rough draft)

I will just let his words speak for him.
From the Times Union
Teacher recruitment and retention are key. A great teacher makes all the difference. But finding them and keeping them is a big challenge. The district is paying substantial bonuses with major help from philanthropists to attract teachers to the most challenged schools.
Well there you have it friends, if only the district could recruit and retain great teachers then we would be doing all right. I imagine he said that with his hand next to his mouth so not many people can hear and whispered, it’s a ‘big challenge “ to find great teachers so we’re making due with what we’re stuck with.

Who cares that experts say in school factors, which if I am not mistaken teachers are part of, only account for about 20 percent of a child’s success.  Sure a student’s teacher is a good part of that 20 percent but like society often does the superintendent is blaming teachers for things outside their control and before Scott Shine trolls me and calls me a liar I feel comfortable saying that because having involved parents or overcoming poverty, factors probably more important than who a child’s teacher is, didn’t make the supers list of lessons learned.  

When the super says, Teacher recruitment and retention are key. A great teacher makes all the difference. But finding them and keeping them is a big challenge, he joins the scapegoat teachers crowd.

I want to make two points. Maybe the super if having a hard time recruiting and retaining teachers because of his leadership. Creativity and innovation are stifled, and teachers are routinely micromanaged, overworked and marginalized.

Second, I think we have a lot of amazing teachers who are succeeding and doing a great job in spite of the super not because of him. Dedicated individuals who give and sacrifice so much and they deserve a leader who both appreciates and values them, not one who laments if we just had better teachers.

Duval's big challenge isn't our teachers, it is our leadership. 


  1. Acquiring a good SUPERINTENDENT is key! Unfortunately, a WORSE SUPERINTENDENT is SELECTED each time! This is a rather dismal trend in Duval County; seems hopeless!

  2. Did you read Mark Woods column from Saturday? He basically praises Vitti. I'm sick of the TU pandering to him. It just doesn't make sense. I guess us teachers don't know anything.

    1. Mark Wood was probably planted to counter any and all facts that might damage Vitti's credibility. But who really is Mark Wood and what is his credibility? Is he in the league of Edward Murrow, Walter Cronkite,Hunter Thompson,Mark Shields, David Brooks, Christianne Amanpur, and does anyone take him seriously? Well I'll be darned!

  3. So, didn't Vitti teach for a total of two (2) years - one year in North Carolina, and one year in New York? Did he actually proved himself as a great teacher?