Teacher fired for failing to give end...

Teacher fired for failing to give end-of-grade tests gets new job

There are 23 comments on the Asheville Citizen-Times story from Jul 31, 2008, titled Teacher fired for failing to give end-of-grade tests gets new job. In it, Asheville Citizen-Times reports that:

Comments on Topix forums : CHEROKEE The Cullowhee Valley School teacher fired for refusing to give end-of-grade tests to students with serious learning disabilities has a new job.

Join the discussion below, or Read more at Asheville Citizen-Times.

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cranky yankee

Moultonborough, NH

#2 Aug 1, 2008
Sometimes, as teacher, one has to take an unpopular stand or buck administrators to affect positive change. Doug Ward should be applauded for putting the best interests of his students first. All to often in the zeal to show that schools are "doing better" and that no child is falling through the cracks, school districts and states devise assessment devices which actually or effectively measure student progress but yet they are forced on the teachers and students. There are a few truths which seem to have gotten lost in the "no child left behind" blitzkreig: not all students are going to be rocket scientists; while every student has the right to a quality education and to do well, they also have the right to fail if they so choose. A major factor that NCLB testing fails to account for is the students' homelives. Are they receiving proper nutrition before being sent off to school? Are the parents supporting the school work at home (aka homework)? Are they encouraging their children to be the best learners that they can possibly be? Are they sending their children off to school ready to learn? In far too many cases, the answer is a resounding "NO!" NCLB holds the schools and teachers hostage to being accountable for those things over which they have no control. When NCLB includes parent accountability, then it might have a chance of actually working.
the Good Ship Duh-huh

Boiling Springs, SC

#3 Aug 1, 2008
I guess this teacher is appreciated in Cherokee, but why do they see the need to hire an activist teacher? Do they really need this media attention? Is that the best thing for the kids? I say, give em uniforms, rules, and regimentation. Activism by their role-models and leaders is, well, questionable.

“[insert catchy phrase here]”

Since: Jan 08

my fortress of solitude

#4 Aug 1, 2008
the Good Ship Duh-huh wrote:
I guess this teacher is appreciated in Cherokee, but why do they see the need to hire an activist teacher? Do they really need this media attention? Is that the best thing for the kids? I say, give em uniforms, rules, and regimentation. Activism by their role-models and leaders is, well, questionable.
Why do you see that as media attention? Maybe Cherokee hired him because they needed him to fill a position and he qualified. Maybe he's a good teacher. Maybe its something more than what you think.
What

Lincolnton, NC

#5 Aug 1, 2008
cranky yankee wrote:
When NCLB includes parent accountability, then it might have a chance of actually working.
NCLB will never work and it sure as heck isn't the parent's fault. Nor is it the teachers or students.

Mr. Ward, I cannot believe what I've just read. After all that. I am disgusted all over again. Watch your backs Cherokee. This man is both wishy and washy!
brio

Asheville, NC

#7 Aug 1, 2008
way to sell out and back down from your principles - i actually had some respect for you doug, but you're just another mindless soldier fighting for the machine after all.

way to go, coward.
brio

Asheville, NC

#8 Aug 1, 2008
and another thing - i left an insanely nice teaching job up in central new york - making 50k my 3rd year and i too was an 'activist teacher' about these nonsense tests. Without any pressure from outside, I quit - and people tried to talk me out of it, but what i was doing in that classroom was not educational and had no meaning - so i left. and the whole profession is that way - so i left. there are other jobs and you clearly don't have strong enough convictions to help you leave a system you don't believe in (i bet you do now though) - i bet you didn't even think you'd get fired. you went from being someone who fights for what's right to another sell out. i'm so glad i didn't go back on my principles the way you have so quickly been able to - and until nclb and all traces of bush administration stupidity are gone.
NCbigmouth

Weaverville, NC

#9 Aug 1, 2008
Why does this guy still have a teaching certificate in NC? Don't like the rules, fine!
Then lobby, write letters, whatever it takes to get the rules changed. Break the rules, lose your right to teach! Take your agenda elsewhere,
flip burgers, mow lawns, become a street preacher, who cares, but get out of the school.
By the way, this is not a diss on those that do the work I mentioned above, just an illustration.
This guy has a degree, a certificate and he chose to put both at jeaopardy...his choice, and his agenda. Where are the gutless politicians and education regulators? Sitting in their nice
offices and smiling like skunks eating cabbage with no heat on them and no gutsy decisions to make.
bdgunner

Greenville, SC

#10 Aug 1, 2008
My hat is off to this so called activist teacher. He made his point (as someone had to)in defense of his students who are the least likely able to do.
I'm glad he will be able to continue to use his education to help others.
bdgunner

Greenville, SC

#11 Aug 1, 2008
brio wrote:
way to sell out and back down from your principles - i actually had some respect for you doug, but you're just another mindless soldier fighting for the machine after all.
way to go, coward.
What would you do if your livelyhood was taken away from you? You would bend, that dont mmake you a coward. I think you are unfair to be so critical of him.

“Report and Deport1866-DHS-2 ICE”

Since: Feb 07

Location hidden

#12 Aug 1, 2008
He took a stand and paid his dues!! I don't blame him one bit!! We need more like him in the whole school system---but then that would disrupt the mainstream, ehhh?
cgyps

Little Valley, NY

#13 Aug 1, 2008
More teachers need to stand-up and fight for the children instead of just cowering to the whims and wishes of the NEA and other political powers that sit at a desk and dream up these 'wonderful' schemes to spend more money.'Course how else can you get your buddies a triple digit job?
Jim Rio

Raleigh, NC

#14 Aug 1, 2008
brio wrote:
way to sell out and back down from your principles - i actually had some respect for you doug, but you're just another mindless soldier fighting for the machine after all.
way to go, coward.
Oh this is rich! You have the audacity to dress him down and call him names in public yet you dont have the balls to use your real name in your post. Way to go a-hole!
standing on the sidelines

United States

#15 Aug 1, 2008
If you think Jackson County Public Schools tour of duty was bad, man you ain't seen nothing yet by setting up shop on the rez.
Jackson County

Cullowhee, NC

#16 Aug 1, 2008
the Good Ship Duh-huh wrote:
I guess this teacher is appreciated in Cherokee, but why do they see the need to hire an activist teacher? Do they really need this media attention? Is that the best thing for the kids? I say, give em uniforms, rules, and regimentation. Activism by their role-models and leaders is, well, questionable.
Doug Ward is a superb teacher. Constructive activism is good for kids. I'm not suggesting any of us go out and protest just anything that comes along, but when something is clearly wrong, as this test was, then I think the adult is right to stand up for what they believe in. Kids can learn good lessons from this.
thompson

United States

#17 Aug 1, 2008
cgyps wrote:
More teachers need to stand-up and fight for the children instead of just cowering to the whims and wishes of the NEA and other political powers that sit at a desk and dream up these 'wonderful' schemes to spend more money.'Course how else can you get your buddies a triple digit job?
It is very easy to sit back and say, "Stand-up for what you believe, and lose your job that you always dreamed of, trained for, and were educated for. Deprive your students of a caring, committed, accomplished teacher. Forget about putting food on the table, clothes for your kids, paying your bills." Almost every employee, in any occupation, could buck the system for improvement - but in real life - teachers have to survive also. I am a retired third grade teacher who HATES the EOG tests for many reasons. I would love to see a change, but it has to be done through legislature. Doug lost his job, but didn't really accomplish anything.
rickm

Raleigh, NC

#18 Aug 1, 2008
brio wrote:
way to sell out and back down from your principles - i actually had some respect for you doug, but you're just another mindless soldier fighting for the machine after all.
way to go, coward.
Oh look, it's another Che.

“Alan Ditmore”

Since: May 08

Leicester

#19 Aug 1, 2008
It's a test, so what. Tests are neither a major help nor a major hindrance. Whatever funding is needed for SPED should simply be transferred from general and accelerated ed. All of it if necessary. Really special ed is the only acceptable king because few parents plan in advance to have learning disabled kids, and it's not okay to plan in advance to need taxpayer help as in general ed.
Doc 2169

Spartanburg, SC

#20 Aug 1, 2008
The public needs to stand up and start fighting against the EOG test and the No Child Left Behinde.While the NCLB is a good concept it will never work. All children are never going to be on the same learning level as the fine Mr. Bush wants to happen by 2014.All children learn different and the special Ed kids are in a different class.The way that NCLB is set up all the special Ed scores are totaled with the other scores and then the overall score is given to a school.That is why when a school does not make the grade so many years in a row a parent has the right to move there child to a different. Just because a school does not make the grade as by NCLB does not mean they are a bad school.This whole system is wrong for our kids and they are all being punished.Its all about end of year test that is what they are being taught when they need to be taught what they need for the real world.I commend this teacher for doing what he did and I would encourage more to do the same.When stuff is done in numbers people take notice and we as parents also need to stand up and speak to our senate or house members so that they can take a stand up for our children also.
Uhh what

Greenville, SC

#21 Aug 1, 2008
der da der
alekas

Taylorsville, NC

#22 Aug 1, 2008
NCbigmouth wrote:
Why does this guy still have a teaching certificate in NC? Don't like the rules, fine!
Then lobby, write letters, whatever it takes to get the rules changed. Break the rules, lose your right to teach! Take your agenda elsewhere,
flip burgers, mow lawns, become a street preacher, who cares, but get out of the school.
By the way, this is not a diss on those that do the work I mentioned above, just an illustration.
This guy has a degree, a certificate and he chose to put both at jeaopardy...his choice, and his agenda. Where are the gutless politicians and education regulators? Sitting in their nice
offices and smiling like skunks eating cabbage with no heat on them and no gutsy decisions to make.
The mere existence of rules does not make them sacrosant. This rule was stupid, and Doug Ward took a principled stand. He knew what he stood to lose and didn't whine about it.

Your desire to see the "gutless" take action is misguided. Instead of worrying about Ward's certificate, they should do their jobs and take a hard look at the issue of this case, the mindless testing of all kids as though all - even the handicapped - are one and the same.

If people lost their right to a particular profession by simply showing a rule for the foolishness that it is, we would still be enjoying high tea every afternoon, provided the British hadn't taxed us colonists to the point that we could not afford it.

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