Friday, December 3, 2010
LISD staff is afraid to speak out, LMT reports
Anybody has any questions?? Nobody?
A welcomed article in the LMT this morning touched upon a subject that has been around probably for as long as LISD itself. Board member Cecilia Moreno continues to be upfront with her concerns. She told Superintendent Marcus Nelson that LISD employees are not encouraged to have opinions. Nelson disagreed with her statement, responding "that's absolutely not true" according to LMT's Nick Georgiou.
The idea that the input of LISD employees is not well-receivedd is not anything new: what is new is that a board member,in a very few words, is clearly stating a very real problem. Incidentally, most of the community has praised Dr. Nelson's work at the district. He has definitely made a difference for the better. A lot of times the problem is the omni-potence of campus principals who try to keep any complaints from ever reaching "Central Office", as the district's headquarters are referred to.
I have known a good number of teachers and for the most part, they all know that at LISD, you better off just minding your own business. Just the idea that you are questioning a policy or practice labels you as a trouble maker. It does not matter that, by your question, you are actually trying to improve the quality of education at the district. What DOES matter is that you, a college-educated, state-certified professional dare question the principal (or other assorted administrators). Many new teachers are full of ideas and have the energy to wonder aloud if th tired, same old practices but are actually working. For their initiative, they are met with scorn, or at best, with apathy. For a lot of them, that disiilusionment is a pretty big blow.
We, at laredotejas congratulate trustees Moreno and Jose Valdez for speaking out on a very real problem. Valdez was actually the one who said at the meeting "your staff is afraid. They don't want to rock the boat. They have been told off too many times".
To Dr. Nelson, keep up the good work and keep listening to the teachers. They are what makes or breaks our schools' success. Next time you meet with teachers, try keeping out everybody else, including literacy coaches, counselors and the like. Talk only to the teachers and you might get a much clearer view of what goes on in the classroom.