Susan Purinai: Let teachers teach

April 9, 2014 

I recently retired from teaching. I had the pleasure and good fortune to work with the finest group of people over the past 30 years – classroom teachers.

The solution to improving our schools is to allow these intelligent, creative, compassionate and hard-working teachers to do what they do best – teach. The solution is not to implement new programs and create “data-driven” schools. Eliminate constant testing and superficial programs and make schools a place for uninterrupted learning. The classroom teacher is overwhelmed with useless tasks, bombarded with interruptions and forced to sit through professional development that does little to improve student learning.

And the one constant throughout my teaching career that affected my ability to effectively teach was class size. Upon leaving, I had 32 to 37 students in my classes. Perhaps if all the curriculum specialists were given a classroom with that many students, class size could be reduced and learning could be the priority in our classrooms.

The best curriculum specialists are the teachers, and until this is recognized and all teachers are given better pay, our schools are doomed for failure.

Susan Purinai

Rocky Mount

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