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Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday Five

1. Today is OPENING DAY!! Well, technically yesterday was Opening Day for MLB, but today is the big day for the Texas Rangers! The only way I would be more excited is if we actually got to go to the Ballpark like we did last year, but that is unfortunately not the case. We'll just have to experience the magic from home. Or someone else's home since we have stupid regular TV and can hardly get any games anymore.

2. I don't even know when we'll be able to make it out to the Ballpark for our first game this year. Before Avery was born we went at least once a week. We even made it out to quite a few games the season she was born. It was harder to go last year because she requires a little more entertainment, but we're hoping that this year she'll enjoy watching the game (haha, maybe?) or at least enjoy the atmosphere. Our half-price ticket connection (hehe) comes back from Costa Rica at the end of April, so hopefully we can go to a game in May before Landon gets here (and he'll get his first taste of the Rangers as soon as possible; Avery's first game was when she was 5 weeks old!).

3. Since I'm on a baseball kick in this post, I would also like to inform you that I have been suckered into recruited to play Fantasy Baseball this year. I may be the only girl in the league, and I may be clueless as to how the league actually works (I've only played Fantasy Football, which so far seems way easier), but I refuse to lose. I probably won't win, but I will not come in last. Especially since my brother is convinced that I will. :)

4. And now to switch gears completely. Budget cuts in education. That was a fragment (don't worry, I don't teach English anymore).

I get that the state (well, really the whole country) is out of money. I get that that means that budgets have to be cut. I get that that means that even the most worthwhile things like education will suffer. I actually don't have a problem with cutting education budgets in general because honestly I saw so much excessive, unnecessary spending in our district when I was teaching. (Keep in mind, I was in a great district, and I'm almost positive that kind of spending went on in most, if not all, Texas districts, simply because the money was there.)

What I do have a problem with is how districts (at least ours) are choosing to cut budgets, and that is in the way of teachers. I'm sure that because of the sheer amount of money that needed to be saved, the problem could only be solved by eliminating some positions. What makes me crazy is that seniority seems to be playing the biggest role in these cuts. There are positions in the administration building that seem absolutely worthless, and the teachers that they're cutting are overwhelmingly first-year or new-to-district teachers.

Whatever happened to rewarding actual job performance? In my observations, many first-year teachers, while completely clueless in that first year, figure it out (i.e. classroom management) and become fantastic educators by their second year (think tons of energy, passion for the profession, and a willingness to try new teaching techniques). Whereas many of the teachers who have been in the school system longer than I've been alive are completely burned out, negative, and doing just enough to get by.

I know it's just wishful thinking, but in a perfect world, the decision-makers would use this time to get rid of the teachers who have no business being in a classroom in order to keep the ones who actually care about their students and work their butts off to see them succeed. Actually, if we're talking perfect world here, we wouldn't be in this economic situation, but that's a story for another day.

**Please know that I do not think that all "seasoned" teachers are terrible. Nor do I think that all new teachers are good. I just wish that there could be a more fair way of making these decision, rather than just who's been at the school the longest.**

Okay, that topic really should've been its own post. I got a little carried away.

5. This weekend is another free one for us (two in a row?!?), so we're hoping to get some more stuff done around the house. Try not to get too envious of our super-exciting lives.

Have a great weekend!


elizagolightly said...

I love your #4!

Anonymous said...

1. 2. Love going to baseball games!
3. Some people are crazy with their Fantasy teams. Good luck!
4. Totally agree with you. Don't get me started on talks about budget cuts and education.
5. We have a free weekend too!!! I'd love to stay home but who knows how long this nice weather will stick around for. We're going to head to a food trucks gathering.