Voices from the Field

Published in SEDL Letter Volume XIV, Number 1, February 2002, Family and Community Connections with Schools

We received a great deal of feedback on the last issue of SEDL Letter ("Teachers —They Matter Most"), ranging from requests for multiple copies and for permission to reprint articles, to comments from educators in the field.

Bob Wells, superintendent of Edna ISD South Texas wrote:

"I really enjoyed the most recent SEDL LETTER, though I did react to some articles, particularly Ms. Clayton's piece. . . . The worst public relations information about teaching comes from teachers. Students do not want to become teachers because teachers spend time complaining about teaching—the requirements, the salary, and the pressure—to their students. I spend a great deal of time publicly promoting the teaching profession and the teachers employed in my district. No matter what I say, students who graduate from high school have likely heard twelve years of complaining. . . . If teachers are unhappy in their current setting, given the number of statewide vacancies, they should leave. If people enter the profession with the goal of making more than just above the federal poverty level, then they should leave. If people enter the profession and seek to practice without accountability, then they should leave. Meanwhile, as long as teachers complain to students and the community, then the perception of teaching will remain right where it is."

We also heard from Vicki Creed of Ada, Oklahoma, who wrote:

"How do I let Carey Clayton know how much I enjoyed her article "Tough Enough to Teach" in the October, 2001, issue of SEDL Letter? Not only was her article well written, but she hit the nail right on the head in every area. Thanks so much for printing it."

Educator Author Needed

We are looking for educators—administrators, teachers, or those working in higher education—to write for 'Voices in the Field.' The next issue of SEDL Letter, scheduled to be printed late spring, will focus on student achievement. We will examine what it takes to improve student achievement and learning and what the No Child Left Behind Act means for schools and districts in our five-state region of Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas. If you would like to contribute an essay based on your experiences related to the improvement of student achievement, please contact editor Leslie Blair. Essays should be no longer than 1,000 words, and we offer an honorarium for essays printed in SEDL Letter.


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