If You Build a Better Crutch, We’ll Make a Lazier Student

Isn't that the truth? I was talking to a friend from my old school the other day. They had to read the article from the last post about the kid who went to DC public charter schools and then was unprepared for his freshman year at Georgetown. Surprise! You weren't prepared because your teachers had to spend most of their time coddling and cajoling the way-behind, the lazy and the disruptive in your midst. (If you are poor and your mom is a drunk, that's sad. But it is secondary. The teacher Read more [...]

Making Myself Useful (and other items)

(I'm a bit rushed...driving to Indiana in...36 minutes. More on that in a minute.) Churn 'n' Burn and Spin Me to the Door There are two short things I read this week that I believe are connected. The first was an article in Education Week from early in April called When Teachers Are Treated Like Widgets, Education Suffers. It was written by academics who are tired of all their studies getting messed up because they can't get stable control and experimental groups of teachers to measure anything Read more [...]

Teachbad Manifesto: Welcome Back From Spring Break

The principal holds the welcome back meeting after spring break and tries to get to know his teachers.

Preparing for Spring Break

I'm mulling over the book club options. Maybe unhappy teachers don't want to read about how teaching sucks. (But then, why would you be here in the first place?) Preaching to the choir, as is were...It might be a little like a comedian I'm thinking of right now. (Maybe Lewis Black? I don't remember.) The gist of it was that Christians are crazy to wear crosses around their necks. What is the last thing that Jesus might want to be reminded of as he decides whether or not to come back to Earth? It Read more [...]

Teachbad: Teachbad Book Club Going “Pretty Badly”

FAKE EDUCATION NEWS -Washington, DC Mr. Teachbad, author and creator of the wildly popular Mr. Teachbad's Blog of Teacher Disgruntlement, says he is "less than giddy" about his first venture into the cutthroat world of online teacher book clubs and adds that the "whole thing is going pretty badly." Mr. Teachbad's audience of unhappy, disgruntled, angry, saddened, forlorn, castigated and otherwise disenfranchised, disaffected, downtrodden teachers has responded poorly to the first discussion Read more [...]

Inaugural Teachbad Book Club Eventacular

I am delighted to kick off the Teachbad Book Club with our very first book, Why Great Teachers Quit and How We Might Stop the Exodus (2010) by Katy Farber. The author has graciously agreed to participate in our discussion. Ms. Farber welcomes and invites you: Thanks for hosting this book club, Peter. I hope your readers find the book helpful, validating, and motivating. Mostly, I hope they find that it gives voice to the real concerns of teachers today. My goal is to work to make teaching more Read more [...]

Teachbad Survey Results and Contest

Wow...it's been quite a week. I've been dealing with some weird family stuff that has taken a surprising amount of my attention. I'll spare you the details, but let's just say that everybody isn't not crazy. Anyway, we have business, you and I. First Item: The Inaugural Mr. Teachbad's Official Teachbad Book Club Eventacular Discussion Series (MTOTBCEDS) will kick off next Wednesday, March 14, 2012. The plan is for everybody in America to read the book Why Great Teachers Quit and How We Might Read more [...]

Angry Teachers: Whatcha Gonna Do?

Teachers are in a tough spot. I think it's fair to say there is a growing sense among teachers that the overall quality and attractiveness of this job is deteriorating. However much you might personally still enjoy teaching, or however much you hated it in the first place...it's getting worse. For many people, that still keeps teaching safely in the neighborhood of 'enjoyable' or 'tolerable'. But it will also push many over the edge and out of the profession. (Just wait until the economy turns Read more [...]

INSANE or NUMB? (please report)

A couple of weeks ago someone posted a comment I think you should read. Jessica Knapp wrote about what teaching can do to people. Her words struck an arrow through my heart. I would very much like for you to add your thoughts and stories. Here's what she said: I taught KG for 6 years in an inner city school where 94% of the stu­dent body qual­i­fied for free lunch. In my first year at age 25 I was older than most of my stu­dents' parents. Many stu­dents arrived in my class­room not know­ing Read more [...]

Arne Duncan: Windbag or Douchebag?

Last night I watched Jon Stewart's interview with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan. And it was just terrible. Here is the link. He is the caricature of a crazy, zero independent thought, Washington, DC TalkingPoint Man. It's amazing how far that and an Ivy League degree can get you. Though she has stopped returning my calls, I still consider Valerie Strauss my girlfriend and she had a great summary of the interview. But after letting the disgust from the initial interview pass, and after Read more [...]