Stoking the fires…

December 12, 2005 § Leave a comment

I suppose it’s time I started writing again. My co-workers put me off a bit when the mentioned how gutsy they thought I was for writing what I felt in this whole blogging debate, and at this point, I guess if they want to fire me for stating my opinion, they can go ahead and do it. I’m not saying anything here that I wouldn’t say in a department meeting. I am utterly disappointed that our district, which is supposed to be so progressive, has taken so long to jump into blogging. What I find interesting is that last year, everyone knew that I was the blog king of the department, yet when they started a committee to come up with blogging rules, no one asked me to be on it.

Maybe they knew I’d try to buck the system too much.

It comes back to the whole AUP thing and having student work published outside the district. However, when I asked why the rules could be bent for our test score analysis system, which is on a website not hosted by the district, no one could give me a straight answer.

I guess it’s not all about what’s best for kids.

The other thing that’s been chapping my hide lately is the whole filtering software thing. I know it bothers other folks in the department too, so at least I’m not hanging my butt out in the breeze by myself on this.

I know and understand that we have to have filtering software in place–I did the e-rate stuff at my last district. However, nowhere in the e-rate application (at least the last I checked) does it say you have to block virtually everything. Can you believe that there was actually a committee to decide if they were going to block finance web sites? The people making these decisions have absolutely no direct contact with teachers in classrooms, and most of them have never even been teachers. So why is it that they are making the decisions about what web sites to block?

Techies should do techie things, but there should be some voice of reason when it comes to blocking web sites. If the process for getting one unblocked was easy, then it would be different. As it stands right now in our district, if a teacher wants a web site unblocked, they have to fill out a sheet of paper (paper!) get an administrator to sign it, and FAX it to the geek squad. FAX! These are guys who work with computers every day, and they want the darn things faxed! It sounds to me like they’re intentionally trying to make it hard.

It’s a shame when people like that take advantage of their position to make teacher’s jobs harder. And yet, around here, that’s the way it goes.


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