"The whole people must take upon themselves the education of the whole people and be willing to bear the expenses of it. There should not be a district of one mile square, without a school in it, not founded by a charitable individual, but maintained at the public expense of the people themselves." -- John Adams

"No money shall be drawn from the treasury, for the benefit of any religious or theological institution." -- Indiana Constitution Article 1, Section 6.

"...no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship, place, or ministry whatsoever, nor shall be enforced, restrained, molested, or burthened in his body or goods, nor shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief; but that all men shall be free to profess, and by argument to maintain, their opinion in matters of religion, and that the same shall in no wise diminish enlarge, or affect their civil capacities." – Thomas Jefferson

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Serious Topics in Education

I'm on our teachers' association team which meets with the administration once a month to discuss issues of importance to the school system. I've been on the team for quite a few years...6 or 7 at least...and I've always felt that we've helped solve some problems and have improved the school environment for our students and teachers.

This year, however, a new crisis has arisen which threatens to undermine the educational process and cause chaos and disunity for years. I refer, of course, to the declaration by the administration that denim not be worn to school by teachers.

According to the administration, denim is unprofessional in any form and presents teachers in a bad light when we are visited by outsiders. Denim is casual and we must be formal. Denim is cheap and we must show that we use our money wisely by buying high quality, non-denim clothing. Denim is low class and we are high-falutin'. It's clear that there must be solid research surrounding this issue. Our administration is data centered. Nothing happens in the school system without a good, solid, research based reason. It must be true that teachers who wear denim are not as effective as teachers who do not.

Therefore, no more jeans, and no more denim jackets or skirts. The elimination of denim from the wardrobe of teachers will have a positive impact on the education of children. No longer will children be taught by people who have the poor fashion sense to choose a fabric representative of the lower classes. Test scores will improve because teachers will be wearing clothes which assure the public of their professionalism.

Would you want your doctor treating you without his or her lab coat on? If you were in an accident, wouldn't you want the EMT at the scene to have his or her uniform on in order to receive the best possible care? Would you get on a bus, subway, train, or other form of public transportation without first checking to make sure that the driver is wearing his or her official transit system uniform?

Thank goodness we have administrators who are familiar with the latest trends and issues in education. The damage caused by a denim-laden teaching staff would take years to undo. Luckily the problem has been addressed and corrected. Our children are safe once again.

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This is indeed a crisis. But let me say from experience: the anti-denim thing works. Professionalism reaches a new high. Just look at School 99, where we couldn't have been stronger as a staff. So, look at what you have to look forward to... reaching School 99 heights, where you will "respect [y]ourselves and one another till [you] die"!