Sunday, December 02, 2012

SPS Teacher On Tavis Smiley Show

Shout out to Northgate's Zac Stowell and the radio report on his classroom that aired on the Tavis Smiley show recently.  It's a great 9-minutes of a day in the life of Mr. Stowell's classroom. 

10 comments:

listener said...

He sounds like a strong teacher and I was very supportive of his comments until this:

...in certain environments, you can put a robot in front of the kids and the kids are going to be successful. They have all the parts in place; they have the afterschool piano and the violin, the karate and gymnastics and soccer. You know, our kids don't have that...these students need the best teachers and some of the not as effective teachers should be in schools that don't need as effective teachers...

All kids need effective teachers. Period.

Melissa Westbrook said...

Listener, I agree with your comment.

Anonymous said...

listener -
you're exhibit #1 of 1 of the big reasons why teachers don't go in front of the public - who needs your kind of nit-picking after spending all day focused on teaching / herding 25+ little kids or 150+ adolescents?

maybe he should have used different phrasing - such as you need a different skill set at his school than at a school where all you do is hand out As, Bs, gold stars and trophies to keep the helicopter parents off your back!

by the way - do you have any ideas to get your ideas paid for?

AttackThePhraseHerding!

Charlie Mas said...

Mr. Stowell said that some students need the MOST effective teachers while others can be successful with LESS effective teachers. He did not say that any students should have INeffective teachers.

Please don't suggest he said something that he did not say.

Anonymous said...

Not true, Charlie. The quote in the first comment matches the broadcast word for word.

listen again

Charlie Mas said...

I read the words.

They talk about degrees of effectiveness, not effective and ineffective. Less effective does not equate to ineffective.

If that were the case then every teacher but one, the most effective, would be ineffective.

hschinske said...

Charlie, it's the robot bit people are talking about. Yes, it's hyperbole, but that image sure sounds as though he's saying a totally inadequate teacher would be okay as long as the kids have karate and violin lessons and such. And I'm sorry, but it isn't that simple to raise educated kids even if you have got the money for extras.

(hey, even captcha wants me to prove I'm not a robot...)

Helen Schinske

Zac Stowell said...

Dear Listener,
Thank you for listening to a day in my life. I would like to clarify my statement. I agree 100% with you. Yes, ALL STUDENTS DESERVE EFFECTIVE TEACHERS. But in reality that is not the case and there are many ineffective teachers teaching in positions that leave children with huge deficits. The point that I was trying to make, and I did a poor job doing so, was that teaching in a failing, poverty stricken school has the neediest students and they need the best and most effective teachers to help them cover their achievement gaps. Some other schools have so many systems in place and family involvement that help with student success. I feel that certain kids can be successful no matter who teaches them because of those systems that are in place. My students don’t have those same opportunities and that is why I give them my all. I am not alone. I work with a core group of teachers that eat, sleep, and breathe school. I believe in my heart that all of my students are “Too important to fail” just like the name of this series. This segment took 7 hours of audio and crammed it into 10 minutes. There are bound to be some questions unanswered. I am always up for great discussion.
zwstowell@seattleschools.org
Thank you for your input and support your local schools.
Zac Stowell
Northgate Elementary

Anonymous said...

I am sorry I missed the program, but am enjoying the comments. I am a volunteer working at Zack Stowell's school. He is a remarkable teacher and I wish all students everywhere had teachers as caring and as effective. And I agree with him that high needs schools do need 100% from its teaching staff as well as from the administration. Of course, we want great teachers everywhere, but in schools where kids have multiple roadblocks to hurdle, it's almost a matter of life and death. Success in life vs. multiple problems later on.
I was amazed at the vitriol. Be respective!

Anonymous said...

Reading Rules!