September 12, 2007

Why Educators Should Stick to Education

First, thank you, Hube, for letting me join the team. That was a lovely, succinct introduction.

Now, on to posting.

I've often marveled at how the modern day teacher often fancies him- (or more often, her-) self as so much more than a teacher. Often because law mandates certain extra-educational behaviors, teachers can come to see themselves as psychiatrists, social workers, even parents. But the job of a teacher is to teach.

It's much like how entertainers come to view themselves as important instruments of social policy: their primary job is to make me smile, not change my vote.

Here's a fine example of why educators (both teachers and administration) should stick to their area of professed expertise. It seems that certain people don't like the idea of Williamson Evers becoming an Assistant Secretary of Education. In the course of attempting to tank his nomination...

"If he was a child in school, you would think he had attention-deficit disorder," said Delaine Eastin, then California's superintendent of public instruction, the highest-ranking education official. "I'm talking about not letting people talk -- being rude, being unprofessional, thinking that because his voice was loudest he should dominate," she said, adding that she knows several people who experienced Evers's "temperament." Like her, she said they are now briefing influential friends in Washington about his unsuitability for the department's post, but doing so quietly.

What does Delaine Eastin know about ADD? My guess is very little if she thinks that someone is psychologically unsound just because he is (allegedly) loud, rude, and overbearing.

This person was in charge of the largest school system in the country. How many kids are being sent in to doctors by teachers who view a strong personality as clinically deficient? We already know that some consider conservatism a pathology. Now, if she's to be taken seriously, psychological non-expert Delaine Eastin is telling us that being loud and obnoxious is a pathology. What's next? Forced medication for people who don't like Baked Brie?

Posted by at September 12, 2007 12:41 PM | TrackBack

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Occasionally the world needs someone who is (allegedly) loud, rude, and overbearing.

Posted by: kavips at September 12, 2007 03:06 PM