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Here are some of the more common remarks when I attempt to confiscate an electronic device in class.
Teachers are easy targets, but I never thought we would be under attack in California. The recent Vergara v. California ruling strips teachers of essential job protections under the pretense of “equality.” Without these job protections, low-income and inner-city schools will become even harder to staff. The case seemed like it helped needy kids, but the media frenzy neglected to uncover the motives of David Welch, the rich Silicon Valley financier of the case. His investments include Microsoft, Pearson, and the Eli Broad Foundation…all big businesses who will benefit from making teachers easier to fire. Mark my words, pay for performance is not far behind. I wrote letters and sent emails about this travesty, but the local newspaper didn’t publish it and my Congressman hasn’t gotten back to me. It’s like no one cares. Protect your job and fight for our rights. Teachers are under attack in California. Watch your back.
I went to a Boys Town training earlier this month and started putting some of the strategies into comics to better remember them. Here is one of the comics, entitled “Guided Self-Correction.” I highly recommend the training, and have seen great improvement when I use them.
When you are a teacher, much of your day depends on other people’s choices. Guidance coordinators, parents, and other teachers must place and remove students from your class as they need to, so you don’t have much choice in who your students are. Some students you can’t stand are suddenly on your roll book, while others you adore disappear without warning. Often you will celebrate when a problematic student is removed from the roster, only to be replaced by one much worse. That’s teaching, though. The only thing you can do is be a source of light for all students, so they will remember you fondly. And not shank you when you turn around.