Who is Minding the Schools? By Mary E. Latela, response to NYTimes op-ed, 2/23/2017
According to a compelling Op-Ed by Kevin Karey in the FEB. 23, 2017 New York Times: “The confirmation of Betsy DeVos as secretary of education was a signal moment for the school choice movement. For the first time, the nation’s highest education official is someone fully committed to making school vouchers and other market-oriented policies the centerpiece of education reform.”
I offer a tried and true alternative. The nation’s highest educational official should be an experienced classroom teacher whose goal is to provide educational experiences which uit the learning style and need of each student, with the goal of learning via phonetics the elements of words, sentence, story, so that they will be able to be equipped for middle school writing and reading. The teacher will provide, supervise, encourage, and evaluate – one- to one on the number facts. By the beginning of grade four all students will be able to correctly identify and work with numbers, simple number problems.
Besides a long personal history as a classroom teacher, I have survived the various programs designed to make learning easier. These programs are expensive, require training of teachers and parents, and if they do not work, will be replaced, eventually, with another director of education with yet another set of methods to guarantee success. I have written syllabi for early education in pre-reading and arithmetic, and have used flashcards heavily. Selecting programs to support teaching of primary reading, writing and needs to integrate the role of teacher, student, parent(s), and a reliable paper service.