For many teachers in the Silver State, constantly being told that your state is the worst in education can be somewhat demoralizing, so as yet another report comes out about how crappy Nevada’s schools are, there’s bound to be a lot of hemming and hawing, quick fixes that don’t work, and the general throwing of darts to “create” the panacea for our state’s educational woes.
I sure am looking forward to the recriminatory editorials and finger pointing that’s sure to follow, all of which I will ignore. In the meantime, I encourage my colleagues to do the same–after reading the following points.
Point #1: Before we all resign in disgrace, let’s take a look at the study, even if most people just read the headlines and move on to check out Miley Cyrus’s latest costume fiasco or who UNLV is going to lose to next in basketball. Factors that went into the study have absolutely nothing to do with the schools and their employees. These factors include parents’ level of education, preschool enrollment and per pupil expenditures, which ranks 49th nationally.
Point #2: You can only control what you can control. You can only control what goes on in your classroom. That doesn’t mean to ignore the study. It means to examine what goes on in your classroom and improve what can be improved. Everything else is just noise. Understand that the external factors cited in the study should be factored in when preparing and teaching. Nevada schools can be improved only one teacher at a time, one class at a time, one student at a time.