wklejam post z FB auczycielki (w kolejnym poście tłumaczenie z googla)
Open Letter to the school district and school board...
I am a middle school teacher. I am tired. I am at my breaking point. All of us feel like we are drowning under the weight of the expectations for online learning. I invite you to join me for this daily train wreck. Sit beside me and watch and experience this nightmare that has become my daily life. You know those nightmares teachers get before school starts each August. The ones where everything goes wrong. Nothing you planned goes as it should. Even though you had weeks of preparation you completely fail. Every teacher experiences that nightmare at least once before the school year begins. But then we wake up with a sigh of relief and realize that it was only a dream. That none of those awful things happened and it’s all going to be okay. That is now my daily life. I literally live in that nightmare. I can’t escape it. Each day seems to get worse and more complex. With another level of insane expectations placed upon me each day. I will eventually crack under this pressure. I will eventually say I cannot take it and quit. I am not alone. Hundreds of other teachers within this district feel the same way. We can't endure this for long.
It’s not working like you thought it would.
Microsoft Teams is not what you hoped it would be. It’s not what any of us expected. Specifically the Teams Meetings. I ask that you meet with a large group using Microsoft Teams and see for yourself. I ask that you try to take attendance, try to see who is on camera and who is not. Monitor all the screens even though you can only see a few of them. See what “large gallery view” is like and attempt to keep track of all the people on the screen. I’d like you to witness and experience what it’s like to “teach” on Teams.
It’s not like Zoom. It’s no where close to the ease of Zoom. Let's stop pretending Microsoft Teams was a good choice for meetings.
Microsoft Teams does not allow teachers to control or monitor the class like we are expected to do. I cannot keep students muted. I cannot turn off cameras when something awful is happening in the background. And most importantly, I cannot see all of my students like I could with zoom.
You say that you're fighting for us to eliminate state testing. However you still require district testing. Pretests and quarter assessments are still tests that you are requiring. You are-not the state.You have control over this choice, and you are choosing to give these tests. You are choosing to add more to our already overflowing plates. Where is your empathy for teachers and students? Seriously? Why are you choosing to add extra tests and then require practice runs for each of those tests? That's two days of teaching gone. Just to practice and then administer your district assessments.
The district testing guidelines are ridiculous and unreasonable under the technology capabilities we are given. Testing validity is not possible under these conditions. You are kidding yourself if you think otherwise. And to dangle my teaching certificate above me as if you can rip it away from me if I don’t follow one of your insane online testing rules is outrageous and demeaning. It is seriously just cruel. It feels like entrapment. You give us unattainable expectations yet know we cannot succeed. Then put the blame on us as teachers when it fails. How is this fair? How can you put me in this predicament? How can you jeopardize my teaching license with your short comings? How can I be at fault for something outside of my control?
I try to stay happy and positive for the students. I pretend I know how to solve all of their technology issues. I spend more than half my class time troubleshooting technology issues. I am mentally exhausted from the endless technology problems and glitches that I need to solve on the spot with kindness and empathy. I am not an IT expert. Even with the unimaginable amount of hours I have spent watching YouTube tutorials on all things Microsoft Teams I am still not grasping the half of it. My coworkers come to me with questions because they think I know the answers. I again, graciously help those who need it.
I am trying to be successful. I am trying to be a good teacher. I am trying to be kind and understanding. I am doing my very best. But my best will not be enough. You may be asking yourself, enough for what? For that wonderful Teacher Evaluation that dictates my pay along side of my state test scores at the end of the year.
How can I achieve highly effective on the Teacher evaluation when only half my students show up on time to Team meetings? How can I be highly effective when only a select few will verbally speak or respond to questions during meetings? How can I be considered highly effective when I can’t get more than ten students per class who are even willing to chat in the chat box non-verbally?
How can I be considered highly effective when teaching content is broken up by endless technology problems that ruins the flow of the class?
Disruptions from siblings and parents take away from the learning environment. Choppy internet kicks students out of meetings even few minutes. Microsoft Teams kicks the students out but will not permit them to re-enter even after numerous times of me admitting them. Parents yelling at students, babies crying, toddlers running around the camera and typing gibberish in the chat boxes. Students watching netflix, eating, drinking, wrestling, rolling around with their animals, and chasing their siblings.
This is not a classroom. This is a nightmare.
How can I be considered highly effective when only half my online students submit the work when asked? Repeatedly asked and given class time to complete.
How can I be considered highly effective if parents tell their kids to do chores instead of my classwork?
How can I be considered highly effective when students are logging into my class Teams Meetings from their iPhones as they walk around the food court in the mall?
How can I be considered highly effective when students login for a meeting and then walk away from their computers?
How can I be highly effective if students join our meeting to tell me they have to run errands with their mom and can’t stay logged in to my class?
How can I be considered highly effective if I create hour long lessons in YouTube for students to watch so they get some content taught, (without a break in the flow) and on average students only watch 5 minutes of it?
If your response is, call home for all of those circumstances. Really? Call home? I have over 160 students online. Plus I have in person students. That number grows daily. I would be making over 50 phone calls a night if I were to call home about all of these issues.
At what point does my own mental sanity matter? At what point does this teacher abuse end? At what point will someone in the district put an end to this madness?