Teacher Finally Apologizes: “Achievement Gap My Fault”


Indianapolis, IN

Trent Jakob, eighth grade Earth sciences teacher, was surrounded by family and friends as he tearfully spoke to reporters this morning in front of the Andrew J. Brown Academy Middle School in Indianapolis, IN. After years of denial and excuses, Mr. Jakob finally admitted that the achievement gap was the work of none other but himself.

A transcript of his remarks follows:

I stand before you today, a broken man with a heavy heart. It is so heavy because it is filled with shame….tightly-packed shame made of iridium and lead…I do not deserve golden shame, and it is not as dense an element anyway.

For nine years I have held the sacred trust of the Great State of Indiana, the good people of Marion County, and the below-average children and parents of the Andrew J. Brown Academy Middle School. I have let you all down. And I am sorry.

As you may know, scores fell at our school last year. I believe this is a direct result of my ineffectiveness as an educator. I am a bad teacher and a bad man. What sort of person would teach for nine years and see test scores drop on his watch in this way? We are all connected. What happens here affects everyone, everywhere.

Some people would have you believe that the achievement gap is the result of shitty parenting, poverty, and toxic neighborhoods. I am here to tell you that these people are pussies and they don’t believe in children. I have allowed them to corrupt me. The intergalactic achievement gap is my fault and mine alone.

As evidence of my treachery I submit the following:

I don’t call parents that much. Forgive me…but they are not all that helpful.
I have been late turning in weekly lesson plans.
Sometimes I think of the warm-up activity just as the students are coming into class, or slightly after.
I have not provided kinesthetic learners with enough opportunities to demonstrate mastery of content through clapping and jumping.
I have not fully differentiated for every possible learning style and ability level.
My expectations have not been high enough.
Don’t even get me started on my lack of rigor.
I have not given more difficult work to my students who can’t do the easy shit.
I have not taken the proper time and care to ensure that there exists some parallel universe in which whatever this one psycho girl writes meets the standards of the assignment and she graduates.

The jig is up
The news is out
They finally found me
The renegade who had it made
Returned for the bounty*

I can only pray that God and America will forgive me.

Thank you.

*This is from the Styx song Renegade, for which I couldn’t find a good YouTube video. Forgive me.

—By the way, I have nominated myself for a Bloggers’ Choice Award for Education. If you would like to support this effort, click the link below. And thank you. I have been gratified by the response to this blog, which was originally intended simply to keep me from going crazy, hurting someone, and going to jail.

Vote for Teachbad!

Mr. Teachbad

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15 Responses to Teacher Finally Apologizes: “Achievement Gap My Fault”

  1. Two Cents says:

    God bless this teacher for setting the standard (I just KNOW this is legitimate news because it’s on the interweb). It’s about time we as a profession admit that, like a bunch of cheap whores, we screw our clientelle. I had a student this week that I didn’t wake up–on Wednesday I believe it was–until class was almost over. Another student I have missed this week because of her pre-planned vacation and I didn’t even have the decency to include HER priorities when planning MY week–self centered me. Goddamn, this is cathartic…I teach my classes as though someone but me should give a shit. I consistently expect students to participate in their own education. I suck! We all suck! Parents are great! We are wrong…always! I wouldn’t trust me to train a dog, much less the divine fruit of the loins of a local parent. As soon as I can, I plan on quitting. It’s the least I can fucking do.
    P.S. I voted–democracy rocks despite what the Greeks say!

  2. HippieHigh says:

    I too fail at maximizing the participation of the kinesthetic learners. I am not sufficiently challenging to the many MANY gifted children I teach. I don’t give them NEARLY enough papers to write, and hardly ANY papers more than three pages long, and I often don’t EVEN manage to grade the 120 papers turned in to me on a Wednesday by Thursday morning.

  3. Ellie says:

    I know, I know….I let my most horrible out control student sleep right through our Human Genome movie today. Oh man was it worth the risk. ..we had a great class.
    But I had to weight it out…what percent chance would I take that admin would surprise visit me the last period on Friday. Pretty darn low…so snooze away he did and the rest of the class really got the content. In fact they told me afterwards how much they loved the movie. Monday though it’s back to total disruption and a wrecked class. He’s got a IEP so no use writing him up.
    Ellie (who just finished 2 big glasses of wine to recover from her shame)

  4. Ellie says:

    change my weight to weigh…hey my big failing is grammer. I teach science. Have a great weekend everyone and recover for Monday.

  5. Tracey says:

    LONG STORY SHORT….I have too many papers to correct….I LOVE THIS! You’ve been posted on Facebook! GREAT JOB!

  6. Me says:

    I can’t stand when they write an essay in text language…the only way to get through it is with vodka…lots and lots of vodka.

  7. DoGoodAnyway says:

    Thanks so much. It feels good to laugh at this ridiculous situation. I would quit if I could. I need a job, and I do love teaching, but all this blame and shaming is getting to be too much. We need some more humor. Bring it on!!

  8. Kat says:

    I too am guilty as charged. It is a beautiful Saturday and instead of creating slides for my AP class and grading essays, I am going to clean my house, go shopping, take the dog to the park and later watch some T.V. I know I should be finishing all of the work that has been heaped on me throughout the week but I just got a case of the lazies. I guess I’ll have to save it all for tomorrow.

  9. Anne says:

    Love it, love it. I teach English in a community college after a number of years teaching high school English. I agree with everything above. While thankfully I know longer have to worry about preparing my students for graduation tests, I still have the same problems, and the same students, that the rest of you have. Luckily I can now blame the students instead of myself.

  10. Pingback: WARNING: This Is A Lazy Post | Mr. Teachbad's Blog of Teacher Disgruntlement

  11. Teacher of the F-ing Year says:

    Goddamn I’m glad someone finally fessed up! I was beginning to think I’d have to fall on my sword given the fact that I have NOT ONCE this year given the three-toed sloth who attends my homeroom positive encouragement for getting to school on time. At least, I neglected to do it the ONE time he actually walked through the door with the other students. I also gave up on running lunch detentions because I selfishly wanted a 20-minute period to myself so that I could go to the bathroom and eat a handful of dried fruit–inconsiderate union lackey that I am!

  12. Orion Pax says:

    I am the worst kind of teacher that exists. I expect my kids to show up on time, with a textbook, with a periodic table, and even….with homework completed. I expect them to take an active role in their education and help others to learn, since I sit on my fat ass and read the damn newspapers online, and chat on yahoo messenger for 7 periods a day. Then, I take my lunch…man’s gotta eat.

    I likes my money for nothing and do I even need to mention the chicks for free?? I will take almost a week to grade exams so I can almost do it right. I do not plan for the kids who will miss a week of my class for a family vacation in late January, when I am shoveling out of 18+ feet of snow. My motto: To Hell With The Kids…Where’s my performance Bonus?? Wow…damn, this does feel good.

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