"This year has been extremely stressful and hard on myself, my colleagues, and—most important–my students. My students have voiced their opinions, and they are 5, but the way they have put it is:
“I don't like doing this stuff” or “Do we have to do this again???”
"Being a kindergarten teacher, I find it ironic that we are expecting FIVE year olds to sit and pay attention to something for 90 min. when we ourselves, grown adults, had trouble focusing for over an hour during the Houghton-Mifflin training.
I understand changes had to be made, but taking away all "play" time from kindergartners is taking away a vital part of learning for that age group!!! I have high expectations for my students, but the schedule for kindergarten seems developmentally inappropriate and is causing the teachers and the students to form negative feelings about school."
"I care deeply about my students and I want them to succeed. I struggle with the schedule that doesn't allow them to be human, let alone children. I know this new reading program may help some, but I also know I'm boring far too many."
"Not sure I would have gone into teaching, had I known I would be a "script reader" in reading instruction. Time limits and scripted reading instruction have taken away the opportunities to be creative and to do fun activities with children."
"If we are truly a data-driven district, then it would be nice if we would be trusted as professionals to do our job, use the standards and materials, and develop the appropriate way in which to reach each of our children. I only have 7 strategic kids in my classroom, that means that 19 of my students are not getting what they need from their literacy time"
"The schedule is the main problem. There is no time for student to have hands on time. The program is too teacher-based and does not let students be independent at all. They get bored and can't sit still."
"This can't be what's best for kids……the "teachable moments" are gone. This new direction taken by the district has taken the joy out of learning for the children who are now treated like robots……it has also taken the joy out of teaching. How is that going to raise test scores?"
Read all 200+ comments from the GEA District Six Climate Survey at the Coalition For Better Education
Photo: Hillary Wheat - Greeley Tribune (11/06/06)