Sunday, October 7, 2007

Out of Class

One pet peeve I have is honesty. Another is being pulled out of my classes for trainings.

This week I have to leave my classroom to participate in a training. I don't mind trainings, but I abhor missing classes for it because it's twice as much work for me.

Last June my department was told we had to attend an assessment training, but it would only be a half day. Since we have great reading assessments, we knew there wasn't much to discuss except for range finding and creating anchor sets of answers.

However, when we returned from the summer we were informed that the training had become a full day because the district wanted us to attend ELL training as well. This angered the department because we were assured we'd only be out of school for a half day. It's why we agreed to attend. I understand the training is important, but I like to attend trainings after school or on weekends.

Well, half of the department (there are 20 of us in total) attended last week, and the ELL portion never occurred! It was an entire day of assessment training!

Now they have to attend another day of ELL training. We started at a half day out of the classroom and we are now at two days. We are not happy because the district office wants us to do this again next semester. My turn to attend is coming. Grrrr.


Mimi said...

I totally understand what you are saying. Last year, we had so many professional development meetings during the day, that we got severely behind in all areas of instruction. Our classroom days felt disjointed and I really think the overall environment suffered. This year they are trying half-days so that the regular day is not interrupted. I hope it makes things better!

By the by...this is minor and probably a result of my overanalytical state due to working on my disseration all day...I don't like the word "training". I know everyone uses it, but I think it implies that we are like dogs. Or that what we do can be broken down into a list of discrete tasks that can be reproduced and disseminated for everyone to implement. Dogs need training. And I know a lot of industries use the term "training" to refer to the development of their employees. I just think it's importatnt to be careful because we are a group of employees trying to increase our status as professionals.

Wow...that was so knit-picky!!! Just know that I LOVE your always make me think (in good ways). I just thought it was an opportunity to start some dialogue.

Back to work!

DrPezz said...

Thanks for the compliments. I appreciate it.

I tend to call the sessions I don't like "trainings" and the sessions I do enjoy "opportunities of development" or some other more pleasant eupemism. This training is just that: a few hoops through which to jump and to create data for the district.

Ironically, the district wants this assessment for baseline data. However, I have already started instructing students, so the data is skewed. They wouldn't let us assess the first week (not until the 4th week!) of school. To make a point about this being unreliable baseline data, I taught my students how to answer each question exactly with specific labels, so they'll all look exactly the same. I didn't give any answers, but I did show them exactly how to structure the answers to get the maximum number of points.

Should be interesting to see how the district office reacts. Ahh, the tacit rebel in me. :)

Mimi said...

We would definitely be friends if we were at the same school. I love it!!