The purpose of this blog is to know and understand the teacher's perspective concerning current issues on education reform and the teaching profession. Inputs from the ones who probably knows what is best for students academically -- the teachers -- are rarely considered in decision making of policies. Yet, these so-called education experts and lawmakers dictate how we do our jobs and what we should teach. That's not right!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

RTTT...Questioning its intentions

Now you know...and knowing is half the battle. ~ G. I. Joe

Besides the blogs on Educations Week's websites, one of my favorite educational blogs that I viewed frequently is Get Schooled blog. Despite Atlanta-Journal Constitution's sometimes biased agendas toward the right, Get Schooled's blogger, Maureen Downey, in my opinion, is fairly balanced; well, meaning it is I who is biased toward her training of thought and insights most of the time. So, don't be too surprised if I post and discussed many of her blog entries on here.

On that note, the inaugural Get Schooled posting deals with the recent firing of New Jersey's state school chief for his unprofessional blunder that cost the state a very good shot in becoming one of the recent Race To The Top (RTTT) grant winners, announced late last week; I mean, New Jersey lost in the running by a mere THREE POINTS.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about all of this situation. While the New Jersey governor was justified in firing the state school chief for his "clerical error", this just shows how politically intrusive this federal education initiative is. Essentially, RTTT grant competition links lucrative federal funding to education reform practices appeasing to the Obama administration that states vowed to implement if awarded this grant.  The problem is, some of these appeasing tactics are driven more by politics than serving the best interest of all children. Yes, the education system in American as a whole is broken and need to be fixed. However, it should be fixed from the bottom up, not the top down.

Locally, all school stakeholders should come together and make a concerted effort to transform our schools and  to improve student achievement. As constitutionally overseers of education, each state should support its own school districts and their local efforts. Federal intervention should be limited at best. With No Child Left Behind and now RTTT, those times are becoming more extinct by the moment. While both federal initiatives had good intentions to help improve public education in America, the manner in which they do it are inconsistent to their overarching provide each American school child with a solid public education that will prepare that child for the future ahead.