We received an email today with a link to a survey. The purpose of the survey was to see why teachers were leaving the profession in such large numbers.
Look at questions 5, 6, and 7. I copy and pasted my answers to 6 and 7 as well. They are in bold.
5. In Georgia, 47% of teachers leave the profession within five years. Rank the following statements often cited as the predominant reason a teacher leaves the profession. Ranking a statement with a 1 will indicate the most predominant reason and ranking a statement as an 8 will indicate the least predominant reason that teachers leave the profession in your opinion. (required)
6. Look back at Question 5 and see which statement you ranked as number one. Explain why you chose this statement. (optional)
The statement I ranked as number one was “Teacher evaluation method”. I chose this statement because evaluators are unable to identify how I could earn a higher score. They cannot tell me how I could better teach my students or improve as a professional. If they are unable to point out ways for improvement then how can they score me anything but the highest ranking? The highest ranking is almost impossible to get because of the verbs used (continually verses consistently). Evaluators cannot be in my classroom continually so they cannot see that I am continually doing these things.
The TKES score is absolutely insane and does not show whether a teacher is good at teaching. It does not show whether they should be fired or hired. It is not a reliable, valid, or just way to measure any professional’s performance.
We do not see dentist evaluated on whether their patients have cavities or not. That is up to the patient to brush their teeth, floss, and take care of themselves. Teachers should not be evaluated by student growth. We cannot force them to pay attention, do their homework, learn the material. We can present it in 17 different ways, love them with all our hearts, and beg them to learn, but we cannot force them to.
7. Please list any additional reasons why you believe 47% of the teachers in Georgia leave the profession within five years. (optional)
Many reasons could be identified for teachers leaving the profession. The reason I have stayed so far is because I love to teach! I love my students! I have been called to be a teacher and know that. When my husband asks me how my day was, many times I respond with, “The teaching was great! The other stuff was a mess.” It is sad that my job is looked down upon in society. We are no longer respected and many people ask, “Why do you put up with that?” My answer: I love the students and someone needs to teach them. Maybe one day one of my students will grow up and make some much needed changes to the way education is viewed and run. Maybe my impact on little peoples’ lives will make a difference bigger than you and me.
Some teachers lose this passion and love for teaching. And when they do they leave the profession. Why don’t you find a way to ignite that passion in the teachers that are left?