Guest Post: Letter to the Times

Everybody’s favorite guest poster, Mr. Mainhart, stops by to publish the text of a letter that he sent to the editor of the paper of record.  We applaud him on both his sentiments and his choice of ancillary publishing venue:

Re: A Sound Deal on Teacher Evaluations (2/17)

When people fondly recall the golden era of American education, they’re thinking about the early 1960’s through the mid 1970’s. This era was characterized by a strong middle class, heavy investment in education and robust teachers’ unions (not to mention robust membership in unions nationwide). Today’s era is characterized by an extreme reversal of all three.

Who can doubt that the standing of today’s generation of American children is a reflection of American society in general? And yet, even as our great society has been brought to its knees due to the ruinous effects of unregulated greed from the private sector, we seek to impose a corporate model on our American education system. This is a bottom-line, numbers driven model that demands ever more standardized testing and stifles the creativity of the much sought-after “great teacher” that dominates today’s conversation.

So allow me to join the chorus in congratulating Gov. Cuomo and all those who agree with him: by under-funding schools, ensuring even more teacher lay-offs, increasing class sizes, and endlessly demonizing this once-proud profession, you are creating a system that no one in their right mind would want to be a part of.

Derek Mainhart

Teacher

Deer Park High School