This weekend I watched a documentary that I know a few others have watched titled Waiting for Superman. Now I know that documentaries are often ripe with political undertones, but I actually enjoyed this one. It went in a completely different direction than I thought it would. So one of the major things that they talked about was the issue of teacher tenure. I’ll go ahead and post the video so that you guys can get the gist of what they say…
So basically as you probably guessed, these “lemons” that they talk about are ineffective teachers that cannot be fired because of tenure. So while I have my personal opinions on this, I would really like to hear what other people have to say. But first, my opinions….
While I understand the initial need for tenure, I have begun to think that it might just be something that keeps bad teachers in schools and inhibits progress for the school system that they are in. Yes I know that being in the education field is often like working under a magnifying lens and our jobs need to be protected, but being a teacher is just that…a job. If you look at other fields employees are often held accountable for their performance. Why does it have to be different with education? Maybe I’m missing some crucial part of the system (which is entirely possible) but I know that I don’t want ineffective teachers. I know that when I send my students off to another teacher or another grade, I don’t want all of the hard work I just put into them to be lost just because their next teacher is ineffective. I don’t want my students to be inhibited in their progress because of a bad teacher. It’s just not something that I think is right.
I guess my proposal to this would be to maybe make tenure harder to achieve. I’m tempted to say to remove it all together, but like I said, I don’t think I entirely understand the whole system well enough to back that claim up. So now that I’ve mentioned my brief and probably disjointed opinion, I would love to hear your guys! Let me know what you think because I know that this is a topic that I would like to take a closer look at in the future.
Until next time,