When Do You Know Enough?

I’m not working currently in the education field, but I do have access to my old job’s activities.

This Friday they have staff development and then next Monday (Dec. 21) they have more required staff development. (I never worked past the 20th of Dec as a teacher.)

What’s really making me think is IF you go through 4 years of college to get a teaching degree, which includes student teaching (internship), and then your state approves you to be a teacher, why do you have to continue year after year to take staff development classes?

It would seem to me that at some point, you KNOW what you are doing and you should be allowed to pick and choose which staff development offerings you think will benefit you. To require teachers to use every spare minute of time either filling out reports or being in classes to learn what they may have already learned, is a time waster.

My most valuable use of time were the times I could sit and look over student work and decide what the students knew and what they were ready to learn as well as what needed to be retaught.  I think that would be a better use of teacher time, when the children are not on campus, than staff development to teach teachers how to teach. If they don’t know by the time they finish their internship, then there is little hope. At any rate, the mass assembly of teachers who spend more time learning how to teach than using the skills they already know, is discouraging.

I miss my old job, but I do not miss some of the time wasting activities that went with it and that were claimed to be “improving teacher performance”. The whole goal of school is for teachers to facilitate student learning – not to continue to teach teachers. Let them use what they know and leave them alone to do their jobs.



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