Announced to stunned audience: ‘I can’t do it anymore’
Stacie Starr reacts to winning the Top Teacher contest (Bruce Bishop/ Chronicle-Telegram
Honored as the “Top Teacher” by ABC’s “Live with Kelly and Michael” show, Stacie Starr was speaking at an education forum earlier this week when she dropped a bombshell.
The veteran teacher at Elyria High School in Elyria, Ohio, told a stunned audience Monday she will resign at the end of the school year because of the new federal Common Core system of standards and assessments adopted by her state, reported the local Chronicle-Telegram newspaper.
At the forum, which sought to help parents navigate the complex standardized testing system, Starr was talking about how special education has suffered under Common Core.
As she fought back tears, she disclosed she is leaving traditional education and plans ‘to teach in a different way.”
“I can’t do it anymore, not in this ‘drill ‘em and kill ‘em’ atmosphere,” she said. “I don’t think anyone understands that in this environment if your child cannot quickly grasp material, study like a robot and pass all of these tests, they will not survive.”
Her announcement was met with gasps of disbelief, the paper reported.
She explained that she has faith in her ninth-grade students, but they are reading at sometimes a fourth- and fifth-grade level.
“Each and every day, I have to look in my students’ eyes and tell them I can’t help them because the state has decided they have to prove what they know,” she said, according to the Chronicle-Telegram.
Teaching is getting harder, she said, because “the rules keep changing.”
Last month, a sixth-grade teacher in upstate New York tearfully asked the local school board to be reassigned due to her objections to teaching using Common Core, reported WNYT-TV in Albany, New York.
“This is not developmentally appropriate for my students, and I find it cruel and harmful to suggest that it is,” Jennifer Rickert told the board.
“I do not believe in knowingly setting up my students for failure,” she said. “I cannot remain silent for one more day.”
Rickert received a standing ovation by parents and teachers in the audience.
On Monday, Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a possible 2016 presidential candidate, began promoting a 42-page proposal to reform American education at the national level that would repeal Common Core along with a general rollback of federal authority. He wants to increase school-choice options for parents and give educators greater administrative freedom.
‘I have to get out’
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