A remarkable story on TheBlaze this morning demonstrates just how out-of-control the American education has become. Susan Sluyter has been a teacher in Cambridge Public School District in Massachusetts for more than two decades, and one can imagine that she’s seen her fair share of change over the years. But the more recent shift in education requirements was so dramatic, Sluyter made the decision to resign last month. She outlined her concerns in letter that has since been made public.
“In this disturbing era of testing and data collection in the public schools, I have seen my career transformed into a job that no longer fits my understanding of how children learn and what a teacher ought to do in the classroom to build a healthy, safe, developmentally appropriate environment for learning for each of our children,” Sluyter wrote in February her resignation letter.
The kindergarten and pre-K teacher said she’s watched her job requirements “[swing] away from a focus on the children, their individual learning styles, emotional needs, and their individual families, interests and strengths to a focus on testing, assessing, and scoring young children, thereby ramping up the academic demands and pressures on them.”
“You know, I’ve never seen anything like this before in my lifetime. I’ve never seen teachers do this. And this isn’t the first resignation letter we have seen,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “This is not the first teacher who has said, ‘I’m running out of this because this is a building on fire. And everybody better wake up.’ I mean it’s remarkable to me that in almost everything the government has its hands on, that is happening.”
In an interview with the Washington Post’s education reporter Valerie Strauss, Sluyter explained that she resigned with a “broken heart.” Furthermore, she traced many of the changes she is so frustrated with to the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001.
“Over the years I’ve seen this climate of data fascination seep into our schools and slowly change the ability for educators to teach creatively and respond to children’s social and emotional needs,” Sluyter wrote to the Post. “We are now expected to build in more math instruction time each day, with ‘math blocks’ to mirror our ‘literacy blocks.’ This is kindergarten and pre-K. These are 4-, 5- and 6-year-olds. Children this age do not learn well though blocks of single subject academics.”
Sluyter believes the new standards are leading children to “feel incompetent and frustrated,” and Glenn believes this is the first step in a larger progressive scheme.
“If you want to control [children], you break their spirit. And that’s exactly what’s happening,” Glenn concluded. “Once you do that, once you break the spirit of a child, then they’re just slaves to whatever it is you want them to do. This isn’t healthy. This is not good… Where are people? Where are people on this?”