And I've done so mostly because what I have to say on the subject can't be contained in a status update, or in cheering on this pundit or that talking head or some other blogger, and it definitely can't be contained in a snarky, fallacy-ridden, self-righteous math problem or sniveling flash puppet show.
And even here, in the notes section, where I can technically write a doctoral thesis on the life cycle of the current ecosystem of bugs up my ass, I'm not going to go into the specifics of what I'm now calling the Wisconsin goat-fuck.
Because let's face it: I'm not going to change anyone's mind with a snarky comment, or a poorly researched info-rant, or compressed civics class. And pissing people off for it's own sake is only fun if they happen to be folk who's opinions of me I don't care about. Such people rarely make it onto my friends list in the first place, and those who do are usually banished for aggravated douchebaggery sooner or later.
What I am going to point out is what nobody else is pointing out yet in all the screaming mobs and talking heads.
The one thing that I'd love to see teachers have, that no legislator is offering and no educator I'm aware of is asking for, is Power.
The power to run their class effectively and maintain order and discipline. I have yet to know of a single teacher in America's public school system who has it. I'm not sure how to grant it to them, but I have a few ideas.
I would love to see, either by executive order or legislation, teachers, staff, administrators and school districts given immunity from civil lawsuits relating to their operations. There are far too many districts, administrators and teachers who live in crippling fear of being sued into poverty for doing their jobs.
And every student and parent who would use such things to their advantage knows it. That sword of Damocles needs to get off the wall and back in the armory.
This doesn't hold any immune from criminal prosecution. But as long as you're not boning students and there's no blood on the blackboard, a teacher should be able to run their classroom as they see fit.
I reversed the old Spider-man catchphrase at the beginning of this because it holds true both ways. Have power without the responsibility and said power gets abused. Have the responsibility without the power and said responsibility never gets fulfilled no matter how heroically attempted.
And freeing them from litigation is only the start.
No child left behind? They're falling behind anyways, folks. The line should go fail, learn the material again, do the course again and see what happens.
Another fun one: uncouple student performance from teacher pay and evaluations. There are far too many factors influencing a student's performance, most of which can't be affected by a teacher in any possible manner, for them to bear the full responsibility for it.
You want teachers to be cops while they're at it? Train and deputize them as reserve officers and bump their pay in the process.
There's probably more that could be said, but I'll try and let those process.
And don't for a minuite think I'm forgetting the responsibility part of the phrase. But if they have the responsibility already, then they need the power to go along with it.