I will protect your pensions. Nothing about your pension is going to change when I am governor. - Chris Christie, "An Open Letter to the Teachers of NJ" October, 2009

Friday, October 24, 2014

@TIME to Teachers: "Who Cares What You Think?"

I read the deeply-flawed TIME magazine article on teacher tenure today at lunch (we get copies for students at school - I certainly wouldn't pay for it). I'll have plenty to say later, but for now, let me point out this piece's greatest flaw:

Apparently, TIME believes it should give copious print space for the following people to express their thoughts on teacher tenure:

  • Non-teacher David Welch
  • Non-teacher Rolf Treu
  • Non-teachers Thomas Kane, Raj Chetty, John Friedman, and Jonah Rockoff
  • Non-teacher Marcellus McRae
  • Non-teacher Michael Petrilli
  • Non-teacher Michael McShane
But not one teacher was given even a single sentence to defend tenure in TIME's cover story.

Randi Weingarten gets a small quote. I think Randi is generally a good spokesperson for teacher interests (even if we don't agree on everything). But she'll be the first to say: she's not a teacher.

Could you imagine a major magazine article about any other profession that didn't include a single thought from a member of that profession? It's unthinkable; it would never happen. But author Haley Sweetland Edwards and Editor Nancy Gibbs apparently think it's just fine to write a cover story about teachers and tenure and not ask even one of us our opinion on the subject.

There is so much wrong with this piece that it will likely take me several posts to get to it all. But all of those faults are not as bad as this one:

TIME doesn't care what teachers think about their own profession.

This is an insult, and as I've noted before: if you're a publisher, insulting the people who teach others how to read is probably a really bad business decision.

Stand by...

1 comment:

jcg said...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6FOUqQt3Kg0&list=RD6FOUqQt3Kg0#t=37