Why aren't we addressing the following issues head on:
1. Students enter NBHS with track records of failure from NB middle and elementary schools as well as schools outside of our district. Students fail for years, get passed along, and then high school teachers are expected to make miracles happen in a semester.
2. Students at NBHS only have - if they are lucky - a semester of math and English before they take MCAS. That means that they end their math or English courses in January before taking the exam in March. The other half of ten students begin taking math and English the last week of January and are expected to be up to speed by March for the MCAS exam. These same students are held yo the same standard as students who take math and English for a full year at other schools.
3. There is a total lack of support for resources at the high school. Other than paper, teachers are left to their own devices to bring in most manipulatives.
4. There is inconsistency among the remaining three houses. Students are given conflicting messages about their consequences from the three remaining housemasters who by the way are expected to do way too much for any one position.
5. There is a total disregard for student ownership of behavior and learning. No consistent consequences exist, for example, for tardiness to class, telling the teacher to FU-K off, or using their phones in class. Teachers are held responsible for Students who keep their heads down in class because the lessons aren't engaging enough - but even when the lessons are clearly engaging for most students and when teachers attempt to wake students up and enforce the no-head-down-rule, they are given no support and the students are sent back to class where they once again out their heads down and teachers are once again told to be more engaging. It's a never ending cycle of lunacy.
I just wish the public would see how hard we are working and under the kinds if conditions we are working in. I wish the school committee supported us and our efforts. I also wish that the local media did more to support us I'm our efforts. That includes financial support for our classrooms and hands in support in working with our student population on a regular basis. For people who seem to care so much they sure do take a hands off approach; it's all talk and no action. Why don't these organizations put their time and money where their mouths are?
I hope for the best in the new year and for a renewed sense of respect for our profession.