While I have been slumbering, figuring out what to say/do with this blog, someone “liked it’ this morning: rereading it, it gave me a renewed sense of purpose. I am job hunting, and that has taken over most of my concentration. Today I have two interviews, both for Director/Manager of Education position in arts administration. This post already has helped clear some of the cobwebs I’ve laid in my own way. Thanks for the like, Isurrett2.


One of the most disturbing things that I have heard  from a student was:

“Why should I try? I’ll only be working at McDonald’s.”

I was an Artist-in-Residence for a year for a large school district in Westchester County, NY. Still early in my profession, that statement was both a shock and a revelation of a point of view I had never considered before: low expectations given, and projected; leading this student to live  that that is all they can do. The young lady who said that to me was in a ninth grade repeat class. Most of them, I was told much later, were on their THIRD repeat of ninth grade.

Yes: she was a third timer.

It was not that working at McDonald’s is such a negative job, but the expectation of that is all she could expect in life is. There are jobs that many would never…

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6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. RAAckerman@Cerebrations.biz
    Sep 14, 2012 @ 09:30:03

    I reread your original post. And, it still brought tears to my eyes.
    I read your tale of woe and expectation, knowing what is going on in Chicago- and in every other city of our nation- on strike or not, knowing that in my Commonwealth, the Governor goes around proclaiming how much surplus he has (400 million) because he has refused- yes, refused- to fund the mandated pensions for every state employee for the length of his term (2 years, $ 650 million- you can do the math), slashed the education budget of the state, etc.

    We don’t need to throw money at our schools. We do need to feed them. We do need to consider new options. One of the best I heard is to redo our class sizes- cut the class size to a dozen for K-5 or 6. Use the life number (18) for 6-8. And, then, once there is a foundation of education, drive, etc., we can up the 9-12 class size to nigh 30. Overall, that’s about the same average we have now. But, it puts educators where we need them- sized to the issues involved. But, sorry pols, that does not mean we immediately change to these numbers- because we haven’t aptly served the older kids in the system NOW. They still need the smaller size classrooms- but in 4 years, then we can change it.


    • Stuart Nager
      Sep 14, 2012 @ 09:44:01

      Roy: I agree with you 100%. I am subbing at a private prep school next week that I know by name and reputation only. I’m curious as to their class sizes, curriculum, etc. It’ll be interesting to see what they do. Thanks, again. And yeah..I still feel for that girl, all these years later.


  2. PeggyLee Hanson
    Sep 14, 2012 @ 09:32:12

    Good thoughts to you on the interviews!


  3. Edward Lebowitz
    Sep 14, 2012 @ 10:32:27

    Good luck on your job interview.


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