AT LAUSD THE PROBLEM IS NOT JUST CLASS SIZE

Social Promotion.jpgWhile class sizes are too large at LAUSD, which is problematic to say the least, this is not the biggest factor as to what makes it impossible for teachers to be effective. Rather it is the fact that the vast majority of these students have been passed through their prior grade-levels- social promotion- without ever mastering the prior grade-level standards that would have allowed them to be effectively engaged by their teachers in subsequent grade-levels.

It is impossible for a teacher at any grade-level to be effective, if the vast majority of their classes are at widely divergent grade-levels, far below the grade-level they have been arbitrarily put in based exclusive on the student's age and not their objective academic level. With the vast majority of students at these unprepared levels, what common lesson could their teacher possibly give that would be engaging to the majority of their classes?

And any teacher suffering under this ill-advised system of social promotion will tell you that there is always a hard core of students who would rather disrupt the class than be humiliated by lessons that they could not possibly understand, since they never learned. Chronic unreported truancy in clear violation of many of California's Education Codes only exacerbates this situation.

Add to this the fact that administrators' sole concern, under constant pressure from the District, is collecting Average Daily Attendance money from the State for in-seat attendance, while giving their teachers no support for student discipline, and you have an LAUSD school system that cannot possibly educate the vast majority of its students or allow its teachers to keep their sanity. Is there any wonder, under these circumstances, that 50% of teachers quit within 3 years after they are hired.

While finally addressing and rectifying this present LAUSD entrenched system of programmed and predictable academic failure would initially be more expensive, success in a relatively short period of time would stop turning students loose from LAUSD unprepared and predictable targets for a prison industrial complex, where it is clearly more expensive to have these "students" in jail or prison for the rest of their lives than as educated and productive working taxpayers.

3 Comments

The broad and often redundant assertion that teachers are ineffective in their classrooms is misguided and and not entirely accurate though it’s certainly true that classrooms in places like watts or Wilmington are lawlessly operating outside state caps on class size, but it’s more disconcerting to consider the other ways district suits undermine the mission of educators and their students.
Without resources, discipline, stability and support, the classroom is often reduced to chaos and calamities that lead to drop puts, teacher turn over, and the devastating decline of campus culture which leads to community collapse as we’ve seen in Detroit, Phil’s and many urban areas where charter school shysters and standardized testing literally destroy classrooms the schools that hold our culture together and the neighborhoods that matter more than we knew.
Remember Hope Moffet? That young teacher stood up in a faculty debriefing about the school she worked at being closed and challenged the suit at the lectern because they’d promised to let the school remain open if students did well on these tests. Her students were so devoted to the school they surpassed the API expectations which were unreasonable and arbitrary. She was sent to a basement for this bold act of defiance and the schools were shut down as kids faced the facts about a system they were not served by but exploited by. That’s a lesson few forget. Hope was a good teacher whose naive approach to teaching taught is al a great deal. She gave up on her calling
It’s almost part of what a great teacher has to do in cases like that. Look at Socrates.
Are they meeting standards amd abiding ESLRS? More than you know but great teachers aren’t thinking like that or following some pacing plan. They can’t. They have to work with what they have. This is a lot even when there’s no books or supplies. Lots of teachers go in to class and fly by the seat of their pants. They plan less and give the kids room to explore ideas and art and alas the awful state of the world they live in. In this effort, a teacher always learns more from her students than she can possibly teach them on purpose. It’s a fact that many of the teachers are incompetent, rigid, rote , indifferent, abusive or smug in their complicity with corruption but I know some have lively lessons, the sort the linger long after the students are on to the next thing. That next thing is often influenced by teachers. She may drive kids to ditch class or doubt themselves so the just drop out. He may make kids angry or disruptive in classes forevermore Kids may become cynics or cheats but my students stay in touch with me by way of technology. They’re doing things like studying art, starting a business, working as an RN, becoming poets, rappers, teachers, musicians with paid gigs. They have babies, coach football where they went to school . So a few are still exploring options and a couple get into trouble with weed and whiskey. They ask me how to deal with this even though it’s years since we had that connection of student and teacher. There are beauticians and butchers, construction workers, vets, soldiers, chefs, longshoremen, meter maids, mechanics, engineers, probation officers weed growers, Uber drivers, crabbers, daddy’s who need overtime. None of them are famous nd the few infamous are forgotten in some cell wishing they listened to that crazy teacher. They are otherwise happy and prosperous which isn’t what they’re supposed to be. Not where they come from. And I was like them when I was in school and it was a teacher who told me you’re not a work study loser doomed to teenage pregnancy and poverty in every sense. You’re bright. You’re full of life and the irks is yours to take on any way you choose. Go to college. Keep writing. You have something to say. Something others need to hear. Thanks Mr. Coburn I kept my promise to him and studied even when I stooped to party girl. He didn’t face quite the same obstacles one does at Lock HS or Clay MS but the spoiled white brats he had to coddle were not a cakewalk.
Any teacher whose got passion and integrity will inspire and enlighten her students. She will transcend the inequities, the lack of basic things. She’ll buy her own supples and use the internet for her reading assignments because it’s free and kids like that place better than pages of a heavy old book. She will see that and adapt to their world because in the end this is where she’s going to live sooner than later. I had a career that was amazing and rewarding in ways so few can really understand I made a difference in a lot of young lives and it wasn’t negative or predictable it was numinous Those we’re happy years for me. A source of pride. I did what you say teachers can’t do. And it wasn’t in spite of the district doomed bullshit. It was because of it. I got the same punishment as Hope only I lasted two years in the rubber room where I got ny real education and continued to defy these dirtbags in our union and the labyrinth of suits downtown. It went way beyond them as you well know. And I fought with nobility and courage for a long time after I was destroyed by district mercenaries I was a Phoenix with out a career or cash for some time it didn’t matter because I had a mission and it mattered more than any thing until I was finished . I didn’t need victory or the bio flick that we call teacher porn. I can’t stop Betsy or Randy or the bastards on the board who ban Huck Finn and segregate ESL kids because they never heard about immersion or the Brown Act. I realized arhat kiss were autodidactic and plugged in like I am thanks to what they showed me about cell phones computers and the future they’re not going to get according to Lenny a Jewish guy whose parents gave him a sublime education and culture and that rare gift he calls fuck you money. I do not have that cushion and have been homeless because of the ordeal inflicted upon me because i did what was right and stood up for kids. There is no gate worse than being homeless you say and I know. But guess what. I survived and I’m better for it. Pee in a jar, dumpster dive or collect cans to get cash for gas and you’re a shit stain on a drinks underpants. I been that. And I thought I was better than these stains were until I was one of them. You’d love to hear how I got outta that trap using skills I never knew I had and a gig culture but I’m tired and so is your rant. Teachers are better than why you say and So are students. They are all comets or falling stars But you’re not much of an astronomer. So Lenny I suggest you pulll your head outta the ass and live so you’ll learn more while you got a chance. You can’t win. But you don’t lose when you let it go because there’s nothing left to cover in this lesson. Love.

I want to read a good article then I found your article. Information is there.

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