Well, it looks like my self-imposed hiatus is drawing to a close. Recently, the road I was traveling on diverged in some unexpected ways as I resigned my high school teaching position a week ago. Needless to say, it was a decision that did not come easily. My health has not been as good as it should be and I think some of it was related to the job stress. The classes I was assigned to had all special education students but I was expected to teach like a general education teacher and, to make a long story short, I got tired of being a performing monkey for administrators. I loved teaching and felt like I was turning my back on the students I was leaving but I realized the educational system turned their backs on them long ago. My own kids, who are now in 10th and 11th grades, have spent their entire school careers inferring that the high-stakes standardized tests at the end of the year are the ultimate measure of learning.
So many students have internalized the message that they are Level 1 or Level 2 learners who will be relegated to remedial classes until the day they (hopefully) graduate. Meanwhile, the pipeline is waiting for all those round-shaped students who don’t fit into the square-shaped schools. I’m down but definitely not out and, in many ways, I’m looking forward to the possibilities of walking down some roads less traveled. I am grateful for the messages of support and solidarity from my fellow bloggers. Your words have served as a reminder that Deconstructing Myths must continue. On that note, I am here to let readers know that the blog will be returning to it’s regularly scheduled programming in the very near future, albeit, at a slightly lessened pace. On that (hopefully) uplifting note, I leave you with poetry/spoken word performances from high school students at Polytechnic High School in Pasadena, CA.
(One of my favorite performances is at the 48:00 mark.)
Peace and solidarity to all readers.