Sep 24, 2008

DC Teachers Could Learn a Lot From Crayons !

Tuesday was a long night for DC teachers and service providers who attended the WTU informational session meeting on September 23, 2008 at McKinley Senior High . Some had difficulty sustaining focus as President George Parker continued his two hour long oration as estimated by some colleagues. Others had to leave prior to the long awaited abbreviated presentation of Attorney Lee Jackson and the mini question and answer session. What many who have critiqued the WTU Executive Board members and teacher participants to death seem to forget- that in a democratic society and as dues paying WTU members- all of us are entitled to weigh in on matters that impact our occupational futures even when our positions are in opposition to others .

The object of true democracy is to produce citizens who are independent thinkers , questioning and analytical in their outlook while being open to research complex issues. The spirit of democracy challenges conventional thinking and encourages vigorous debate and should not ignore discussions or arguments that may be unpleasant or controversial to some.

Teachers could learn a lot from a box of crayons: "...some are sharp, some are pretty, some are dull, some have weird names, and all are different colors .... but they have all learned to live in the same box - Anonymous. " Posted by Candi.


mommilan&jr said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Colors in the crayon box? Color me red, because my school may close next year due to declining enrollment and I'd be compensated to leave DCPS under the proposed contract. Color me green, because I am confident in my skills as an educator to bring about student achievement despite the fact my students come to me with many issues, little parental support and chaotic home lives. Color me red and green because of the pay raise over several years plus the other benefits the contract provides.

new2dc said...

A democratic forum... are you serious? Were you PROUD of how your colleagues carried on? Their behavior was completely unacceptable. Your supporters, many of whom were sitting near me in the auditorium, were very audibly threatening to "get George after this is over," and "jump him." They laughed and said, "He better watch his back." And these people are TEACHING CHILDREN?

If this is what democracy looks like and sounds like in the WTU, our union, and our community, has little hope.

Anonymous said...


I respect your differing opinion, because I do believe in the democratic process. People have a right to express their opinions and a right to be heard. However, I don't think you can explain or justify the behavior of many teachers on Tuesday in any way. It was disgusting. I am embarrassed to be lumped into a group with those people. They were rude, offensive, classless, and in my opinion, representative of many of the problems plaguing DCPS. How can you honestly justify their actions? You truly call your own credibility into question by defending their actions. Until now, I have just disagreed with you, but I still respected you. No longer.

mommilan&jr said...

Wow... so can you send me an email to answer those questions you deleted??

Anonymous said...


Your blog rules:

* If you expect me to respond to your posts my ground rules are:
* No personal attacks
* No ranting
* Rant- a piece of writing that incites anger, hostility or violence

So, those teachers who deserve to have their voices heard-would you say that they were ranting? especially the ones who were threatening to beat down Parker after the meeting?

Candi said...

It seems to me that some people love to render value judgements of others. But I guess in a democratic society that is your perrogative. Of course it was my perrogative to delte the first post which I considered ranting and inciting hostility with personal attacks and a violation of my ethical blogging rules clearly posted on my blog.

My post on DC Teachers Could Learn a lot from crayons speaks to the meaning of democracy . I have not attempted to justify our colleagues behavior one way or the other. Render value judgments if you desire- that's just not my bag. Like it or not we live in a democratic society. People are free to voice their opinions, become civilly disobedient if they choose and express themselves in the manner that they see fit or even act crazy if they so choose whether others like it or not. That is what living in a democratic society is all about.

If my taking a position to become civilly disobedient causes you to lose respect for me - than so be it. I subscribe to the motto of live and let live. What is intriguing to me is that some can form negative opinions without knowing me nor making an attempt to understand the rationale of the WTU Executive Board members reasoning for taking such a stance. Perhaps if you had prior knowledge it just might shed some light on why we did what we did.

As I shared with George Parker tonight at our Executive Board meeting - I believe that he caused a great deal of controversy and angst among members by releasing an incomplete agreement rather than adhering to our WTU contract negotiations process. Surprisingly- George agreed with me and stated that in hindsight if he had to do it all over again he would not have released portions of a tentative agreement until negotiations were finalized.

Color me democratic and a hard worker for the WTU and the constituents that I represent.
Wanna check my references ??? :-)

Anonymous said...

I love that compare and contrast !

Anonymous said...

Color me embrace diversity and a democratic system. The frustration projection is understandable to some degree and so is being angry over all this crazy Rhee radical reform.You've gotta to pray to God to keep a sense of humor dealing with all these issues.