"When I started school". Always love the trips back in time from people. This time it centers on education and teachers. More than likely you attended a segregated school, not only by race but also the children who are now referred to as special needs and have been 'mainstreamed' into the public school system.
In 1940, not much attention or money was given to public education. The push for a better education came from the military and the sudden thrust of becoming involved in WWII and the urgent need for a larger fighting force. They were disqualifying draftees for illiteracy, too many of them. Trained, qualified teachers were leaving the profession of teaching in the 40's for the much higher salary positions in the factories because of the war. This cause the closing of schools and the hiring of people to teach with no credentials.
After the war education received a much deserved look. There was a push for better standards, better teachers, better schools. It also had it detractors. Money, number one like today, and how much and for what and to whom. Then teachers did the unthinkable they unionized, how dare they. Also at that time the 'Red' scare was in full bloom and teachers were made to sign a loyalty oath in order to be able to teach. The public wanted and saw a need for greater progress in education then feared it. For every gain educators made they faced pushback.
We have integrated the schools but not the studies, the curriculum. We want progress in our schools but not a method that scares us. We want teachers but we also want them to take on more and be counselors, administrators, nurses and specialists and for less money and benefits. We also want our children to turn out perfect after we give them to you for 12 years and if they don't you are a bad teacher. We also expect our teachers to keep their education and teaching methods up to date no matter how much that costs to the teacher. We also expect you to turn out a top notch student without all the extras, we did not have them why should you. We also want you to get rid of that pesky union, we have your best interests at heart. Didn't have it back then don't need it now.
The education system is not perfect but hearkening back to a time when it was by far more worse is not the answer.
Charles M. Reeder
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom