Monday, Sabrina Stevens Shupe responded to Arne Duncan's Open Letter to America's Teachers with what I would say amounted to a written backhand to the face, saying essentially that the US Secretary of Education was being disingenuous.
Justin Hamilton, Duncan's Press Secretary, responded to Sabrina's letter by saying he didn't think that's how most teachers felt.
I'm sorry, Justin, have you met any teachers? The majority of teachers I interact with on a day-to-day basis at school and in the blogosphere are overwhelmingly disappointed with Arne Duncan's approach to public education. Sabrina's words are how most teachers feel.
You see, believe it or not, most teachers understand that firing an entire school staff often doesn't do much to help students.
Most teachers, believe it or not, think devoting more time to testing is oppressive rather than liberating.
Most teachers, believe it or not, would rather not have their job security be subject to fluctuations in outrageously inadequate indicators of teacher quality.
Most teachers, believe it or not, have learned that experience in the classroom matters, and that turning the profession into a glorified temp job will do little more than provide "life support for a system of injustice and exploitation," as a recent commenter on this blog put it.
Most teachers, believe it or not, would prefer more, not less, control over what they teach and how they teach it.
Most teachers, believe it or not, would prefer more support over more money.
Most teachers, believe it or not, would like some means of quality/regulatory control over charter schools as a means of protecting teachers and students from predatory, for-profit snake oil salesmen.
Most teachers, believe it or not, rather than defend the status quo, support meaningful changes in the way we do things that have less to do with satisfying a neoliberal ideology than providing students with agency.
And most teachers, believe it or not, probably have a more informed perspective on how to go about meaningful change in the classroom since most teachers, unlike Secretary Duncan, have taught students.
How do I know?
I'm one of those teachers.