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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Poor Grades Equals Fired Teachers

When it comes to educating our children for success then there is nothing better in the world than a successful teacher. Thus the reverse is true for the parents of children attending high school in Central Falls, Rhode Island.

CENTRAL FALLS, R.I. -- Formal termination letters were sent
Wednesday morning to the entire teaching staff at Central Falls High School, who were fired Tuesday night by the district's Board of Trustees.

The firings are effective the last day of school in June. Just 50 percent of teachers can be rehired for the fall, under the school improvement model endorsed by the trustees and School Supt. Frances Gallo.
- Providence Journal

If you were working in a manufacturing business on the production floor where 50% of the product you manufactured failed inspection before it even shipped and only 7% of it was actually made to the exact specification then you would certainly be fired. To be honest, the employee should have quit long before it became evident to the business owner that they simply could not understand how to make the product to begin with. That is what you call reality. Being fired is the first step the business owner has to take to make sure his business will survive in a competitive world.

What is the difference between the scenario above and the city of Central Falls, Rhode Island firing its high school teachers and staff? The only difference here is that the product manufactured at Central Falls High School is the children of the town’s people.

When you have that high of a failure rate and an abysmal single digit success rate then “Houston (Central Falls), we have a problem”. One cannot argue in any logical thought out process as to why the staff at Central Falls High School should remain employed if the end result is that the students will continue to be robbed of a high school education. The Board of Trustees made the right call by passing out the pink slips.

Starting fresh is not always the best possible way to go but in this case it is clearly evident by the failure rates of the students that the education system at the high school level is beyond repair and needs to be totally replaced. Now the next question that needs to be answered is if the staff and students were provided the tools necessary to succeed in educating the students to begin with and if not then whoms asses should be fired next? The root cause behind such a tragic breakdown in the educational system at this school did not just happen overnight, like an untreated wound; it has to have been festering till the only possible treatment to save the patient was amputation.


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Blogger Will W. W. said...

Cute analogy.

Let me expand on it, incompetent labor force, working with defective materials, burdened by excessive overhead and hindered by unrealistic management expectations yields an expensive substandard product.

5:57 AM  
Blogger Papamoka said...

Will, some of these school systems it always seems that the fix all answer by some folks is to pour money at them which in this case is like filling the gas tank of a 74 Pinto just before it goes in the crusher.

They seriously need to get to the root cause of the problem and fix that ASAP.

Thanks for stopping by Will!

9:26 AM  
Blogger Lefty said...

If a worker makes a bad item because the equipment is outdated, the management dysfunctional, and the materials sub par, it's the workers fault when the product turns out bad?

Central Falls is a low income community. Study after study has been done that shows that socia-economic factors have a direct effect on educational success. I find it hard to believe the poor communities manage to hire all the bad teachers. Instead I think the problem is school districts are not adequately funded to deal with the issues poor urban communities face. And parents need to be more involved in their child's education and stress the importance of education to their children.

I read something once that stated that by the time a child is 18 they have spent only about 10% of their life in the classroom. So really who sets the tone for our children's education?

Certainly their needs to be some educational reform, but firing teachers is not the answer. Finding ways to bridge the gaps in low socia-economic communities and provide educational opportunities that inspire and engage our children are desperately needed. Still nothing can make up for a lack of support at home.

11:37 AM  
Blogger Papamoka said...

I completely agree with your first statement Lefty, and the parents should have been doing something long ago to help their kids and the school. If the school department needed help to get the job done then the Superintendent should have been asking for help to the town leaders or the state. Far too many people fell asleep while this problem got worse. This didn't happen overnight.

Thanks for stopping by Lefty!

1:32 PM  
Blogger Will W. W. said...

Another thought I have.
As I noted in my initial post, I referred to teachers as the “incompetent labor force.”
I think the biggest issue in reforming education in the USA is the influence of unions. Unions have run roughshod over our society since state mandated education. After 60 years they have proven themselves incompetent in meeting the societal mandate.
If any change is to be made, its imperative that union influence be diluted. Unfortunately that will be almost impossible to do, because of their influence on politicians. That is to say I am all for dumping teachers, especially if they're union.
The states must offer parents/taxpayers/voters another option to the union dominated school.
That's where charter schools come in.
If kids are going to get an education (as determined by unionists), charter schools are our best hope.

9:03 AM  

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