Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Woah There!

Today was an exciting and historic day for Mounds View Public Schools. At a press conference held at Edgewood Middle School, Governor Tim Pawlenty officially announced that our district was approved to participate in the State's new Q Comp program.

Q Comp supports districts that establish alternative compensation plans for teachers. Mounds View's version of Q Comp is called Mounds View Teacher Professional Pay System (MVTPPS). To date, Mounds View is the largest suburban district and among only four districts in the state to be approved to participate in this innovative program.

As Governor Pawlenty said today, "Mounds View has a chance to be a very large leader," and clearly, this unique achievement demonstrates that our district has a progressive spirit. It also represents a shared commitment to doing what's best for students by aligning teacher compensation with teacher performance and student achievement goals.

Wow. This seems like good news, doesn't it? (Insert stressed out maniacal sarcasm here) I mean, don't get me wrong, I want to get paid for my outstanding work with student achievement. I work hard and I really like my job. I'm really quite good at it. But, in order to get paid, I will now have to give my art students tests that can ONLY be answered by marking letters A-E with a good old #2 pencil. Student achievement must now be measured by a very precise little machine that scores these little A-E beauties and then barfs out the data for us. Data is very important you know. Data is the wave of the future is what I'm told. OH, and will ONE of these tests per semester truly measure my job performance and my students abilities? Probably not. So, I'll just test some more and gather more data, and many of my students will shrivel up right before my very eyes. Then I'll truly deserve the pitiful check that I live month to month for. I CALL BULLSHIT. Thank you Mr. Pawlenty for allowing me, my art students, and my entire school district the unique opportunity to become your own unique opportunity to put something (data) in your file set aside for education. Why don't you pick on the elderly next time???


Rebecca said...

well maybe you can just give them all A's.. since that's what he seems to want. What a goof ball, as if teachers don't work hard enough and need to be "monitored".. as if teachers don't know how to give grades and now they need a computer to do it.. as if, as if.

Sorry to hear that crappy news.

We should also remember that this is the same governor that while education funding is in crisis mode and spec ed seems to be getting cut left and right, our own governor wants to call a special legislative session to talk about sports stadium issues.
Yeah, he's got his priorities straight

Kari said...

What Crap!!! Julie, I am sorry for you, come to Anoka Hennepin! come to Anoka Hennepin!!! No Q-comp here!! I say that if Q-Comp comes to me, I won't be teaching anymore. What is Pawlenty thinking? Oh, and I agree with Rebecca, I am living in a school where spec ed has been cut and and there are other concerns in education and other issues and we are worried about stupid stadiums?!

emily said...

this calls for a letter to the editor! have you ever written one? i used to write them all the time. it's a great way to get a major rant off your chest. sadly, none of my letters to the editor have been printed (save one in Jounal of the American Medical Association... but that wasn't a rant, just making a point). none other than skip humphrey encouraged me to write my first letter to the editor. he told me that legislators really do read them (or pay an aide to do so) to see what constituents think. so getting your rant out in a public way can make a difference and at the very least, it makes you feel a little better.

Anonymous said...

Julie-I heard this announcement the other day and I really think it stinks.Mikes sister (a retired teacher) thinks this is a stupid idea and will just pit teacher against teacher. On the other hand this administration uses religion to get votes,and wanted this stupid stupid war!! So what else??
It seems to me that they are using teachers $$ to solve problems that they have in education,when the real problem is that they under fund something that is critical to our future. And to the most work-burdened employees they actually want more work!! It is craziness!

Anonymous said...

I agree, what Pawlenty is doing is a joke! It's like using an eyedropper to put out a grass fire.

If the low pay is so awful, GET OUT. It's obvious you're in the wrong profession. Get a private sector job or even better start your own business. Then come back to teaching and see if your perspective has changed any. You'll be shocked at how shrill and hollow comments from your coworkers then sound.

Teachers pitted against each other? Welcome to the world of work, folks. Guess what, everyone has to put up with bosses that know less than you do, political connections winning out over real performance, getting paid less than you're worth, and fighting for promotions with coworkers.

That's how it is for most people. Your company doesn't compete, you have no job (and in many cases, you'll have to adapt and change careers, and more than likely take a nice big pay cut and start over).

As far as funding, please tell me, how much is enough? At what level will the public finally have paid enough to solve the problems? The true answer? NEVER. Because if schools can't keep having shortcomings, the money will stop. And we can't have that, can we?

Pawlenty and other politicians from both major parties are fools. The only way to truly and radically improve "education" is to give it competition. Funny how knowing that you'll lose your entire livelihood because someone does the job better than you do can motivate people (and surprise, unlike now, this ESPECIALLY applies to principals and all those hoiler-than-thou disconnected Ph. D.'s at the top of your district hierarchy).

Of course "Education" MInnesota, the teacher training institutions, the administrators, and politicians looking for a reliable voter class don't want to disrupt what they've got going so it's excruciatingly difficult to change anything.