#340: Why Teachers Walk Out (A Short List)

Here’s a short list of reasons why teachers in Oregon are walking out on Wednesday: First, some math: 40 kids in a class room– times six. A student load anywhere between 160 and 240. 6 sections of up to 3 distinct courses to teach, 87 minute periods. An 87 minute preparation period to plan a meaningful 261Continue reading “#340: Why Teachers Walk Out (A Short List)”

Educational Fantasy #3: Two Teachers in Every Classroom

In 1984 and 1992, respectively, Ted Sizer, in his seminal works Horace’s Compromise and Horace’s School, argued that there was such a thing in a teacher’s class load as an optimal number of students for educational gains and teacher effectiveness. That number was 75. That’s right. 75 students per teacher. In those days, early in my career, English teachersContinue reading “Educational Fantasy #3: Two Teachers in Every Classroom”

Against a Wall: A Teacher’s Manifesto

It has been coming on for a year or two, maybe longer, but I feel it now in my 28th year of teaching more keenly than ever: I have come up against a wall. This is the condition in which I find myself professionally. It may be that things have always been this way andContinue reading “Against a Wall: A Teacher’s Manifesto”

The Going-Back-To-Work Blues Is A Real Thing

20 blog entries later, and the summer break comes to a close. Teachers report back to their schools in my district on Monday. Time to take stock. Time to look ahead. It’s been a strong summer. I blogged, I wrote fiction, became an ordained minister of the Universal Life Church, agreed to marry a coupleContinue reading “The Going-Back-To-Work Blues Is A Real Thing”