While I appreciate Maggie Jones’ willingness to openly dialogue on the huge investment of time and already limited funds our school district recently made for new elementary materials, I remind her that she is only one teacher in a district of thousands and does not speak for the hundreds of elementary teachers dissatisfied with both the curriculum and the rollout, so many of whom have risked pushback by openly testifying at board meetings.
Additionally, as a middle school teacher and Alaska’s 2018 State Teacher of the Year, I take offense to the suggestion that I am unable to participate in dialogue on elementary issues as first and foremost, I am a parent of two elementary-aged children and am currently debating leaving the district solely because of the current reading program and other over-scripted, canned curricula that are creating a lost generation of students unable to think, problem-solve, create and innovate on their own. And I am only one of the growing number of parents who feel that way.
To infer that the 3,300 experts in our classrooms are unable to differentiate between curriculum and contracts is unprofessional and, to use Ms. Jones’ words, not what is best for our students.
— Ben Walker
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