Like my brother, the Chef, dcr I too have a list of recommendation. Being a part of the educational world, I have a perspective that focuses on Education reform. ( Another area of deep interest for me is health care, but I will save that for a future onslaught and thesis, not to be outdone by Luther himself!)
I am 48 year old well-educated professional. I am a product of public education up to the ripe age of 17 when I graduated from my hometown high school. Due to financial constraints and lack of opportunity in 1978, I went to work at a Savings and Loan and attempted S&L Administration. I chose the route of raising my children, leaving behind the dream of a glamour finance job chosing to be a full-time homemaker, “first-teacher” if you will. (please understand, I do not hold high a badge of honor because I chose to stay home…women who continue their careers while doing raising their children have my utmost respect!)
Because I had the luxury of staying home (we sacrificed financially in a huge way, I have no retirement to prove it) I was my children’s Girl Scout Leader, PTC board, coach, and anything else that I could do to help out with the school I chose for them. They went to parochial schools, not because public education wasn’t good enough, but because I truly wanted my children in a small environment, with an emphasis on Judeo-Christian philosophy. But, regardless, I was there day in and day out. I watched and learned from some of the best (and worst) educators. I was educated by my children and the other children.
Midway through my first-born’s education, I decided I needed to make a solid difference. I would take my experience, maturity, knowledge, and love of education to a new level. I would indeed go back to school and attain my teaching degree, and two years later my Masters of Education.
I have learned a truck load, no, a thesis load of material in my ten years as a professional educator, and the 28 years as a professional mom. More lessons than I really ever desired to learn, but I have the knowledge now, lesson learned, (I am a life-long learner) so now I will share with you gentlemen my take, insight, gleaned as a parent with grown daughters, a teacher of people all ages, and an educator so deeply in debt that I will owe your boss for the rest of my life! So, gentlemen, I am a balanced authority on the subject of Education in America.
To Do #1:
THERE ARE MORE HIGHLY-QUALIFIED EDUCATORS OUT OF WORK THAN WHAT MEETS the EYE! Encourage school districts to hire people with experience instead of developing programs to put into classroom “fast-track” educators pulled from the business world. Offer incentives to help those unable to get tenure, or those that have lost tenure do to NCLB! The savings is huge! (We are one of the few fields where experience has virtually little to no worth, more to come on that subject!)
The purpose of job fairs is not so that School Districts can wave the stack of resume’s in the faces of those ultimately fired to say “see we had 5,000 applicants” be grateful you are here!
This is happening, take a look at the number of unemployed or under-employed educators.