Posted in Reflections, Thoughts About Children

Fresh Start…

wpid-488b1c8fcac7474375e033493e2586f6.jpgThe school year 2015-2016 has begun…And I am “not teaching”…

I have such  mixed feelings about this… “How I love the children”…I had hoped the rhetoric about “children and their right to a strong education” would have come to reality by now, after my forty plus years… But sadly this is definitely not so…

In my teaching experience, children from diversity and impoverished homes…. these last eight years of my career I have observed they are “Our” forgotten…

How my children so wanted to learn,  but because of overcrowded class size,  fewer support personnel; and moreover unrealistic, developmentally inaproppriate curriculum with too much testing…  I felt quite frustrated  and even anger…

Our children, our Future deserve so much more…

This beginning school year, I had to visit my “school” to volunteer and check on my “children”, as I promised…

Well, I observed that our school is tackling more demanding challenges; Higher numbers of children because of school closings, not enough personnel to handle the demand, and more expectations…

So this will continue; Until our Government answers…But will they ever listen?…

And I will always speak out!        Until..

I am now in the final weeks of my career as a public school teacher…🍎

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Reflecting on my thirty-eight years; I have taught so many children from grades ranging from kindergarten to fifth grade; dating back from 1972, up to the present.. I even had a wonderful opportunity teaching a college seminar for beginning teachers at the University of Florida, while on a sabbatical working on an advanced course work in counseling education…

I feel so blessed…touching the lives of so many children….

I did have to retire briefly for five years due to my health…However, I still was able to advocate for children in the court system during that time as a Guardian ad Litem…

Teaching, being an advocate for children has been my lifetime passion…

I have such mixed feelings about my retirement…

It is my strong belief that I am leaving at a time our bright intelligent children, especially those from poverty, who souly rely on our public education system are not being adequately represented…Our priorities for children are hindered by an emphasis on testing and collection of data…Our schools that teach children from challenging homes have fewer resources making teachers such as myself overwhelmed and devalued by being micromanaged…And making all this even more difficult;
fewer strong, young, professional teachers will no longer commit to such a rewarding career...

For this I have such regret…

As for myself…I will always feel the need to advocate for our children, and their right to a strong free public education…
And know that I really did make a difference!

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“Letting Go”…

Posted in Mission, Reflections

“New Direction”…

Google Email:

New Direction

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From: Janis S Sexton
To: Christopher Lake… teacher representative, Karen L. McCann… President of Alachua County Education Association

Details:

Dear ACEA:
I have appreciated being a teacher in Alachua County since 1972…On a personal level, for me, our district gave me that wonderful opportunity…
I am retiring this year and for these last 10 years, I  have been quite concerned with the direction our public education of children from poverty have experienced…

It is my belief and experience, these precious children have been so neglected…We have crowded classrooms with fewer resources…Yet demands are extremely unrealistic..
I feel our school district does not address the real issues…We are now going to close schools, shuffling our children, taking  more resources away…And I question how will that help these children?…
Young, strong teachers are so micromanaged…Will they make teaching a lifetime career?…And will those in charge want to acknowledge their dedication…with such unrelenting demands?…

Sadly I have kept quiet…however,once I do retire, I want to actively get involved…I can and do share my concerns on social media…
Thank you for representing us,
Janis Sexton🍎

From: Karen L McCann…President ACEA..                                                        To: Janis S. Sexton

Details:

Thank you for your words of wisdom. I am happy to hear that as a retiree you want to make your voice louder and will now have more time to become more active. I will see you at the ACEA retirement dinner in May, at least I hope.
You can join our union retiree group TRACE and start coming here for events .

Thank you for your love and caring of our most precious lives, our children.

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Posted in Reflections

New Year…New Beginnings 2015

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It is my belief that each new year can be a chance to start fresh; an opportunity to reflect on what is working or what needs to be modified to help better achieve the the goals set for my students…

This New Year…2015…my final year of teaching, gives me my chance to give my students this opportunity to give it my all…

This New Year…with all the challenges and demands, my students deserve no less than the best…I can only advocate that those with the  power felt the same…

“Looking for the Answers”

There has always been their rhetoric for educating our children...But now, I feel our priorities have changed...Our government in r and
What a tremendous disappointment I felt with the outcome of our 2014 elections, here in Florida….In my opinion, this election was a very important election for our children and their right to a free and strong education… Nationally, our government has allowed powerful businesses to overtake their control…

It has always been the rhetoric since I began teaching back in the seventies that all our children deserve a strong public education…I witnessed integration of public schools; strong federally funded programs began such as Head Start, giving more children that opportunity…
In my opinion, that strong sense of idealism no longer prevails…Our government does not want to provide all our children that strong education…they so deserve…

Because of such a lack of caring about children, our school day is locked into a schedule of developmentally inappropriate curriculum, the latest technology that is not really field tested; with so many glitches, that constantly does not function or slows the progress of our day…And moreover, tests that really do not match what really is essential and appropriate for our first graders…

It has been through my experience in the classroom, I have come to the strong opinion that our Government wants Public Education to fail…
They have turned over their responsibility of appropriately funding and supporting the public education of our children, to the powerful, who sell their Curriculum, Technology and Tests…to make money; definitely not in the business to educate!…

The answer is quite simple…Our Government is a Government of the People, for the People,…by the People…Give it back to the People…

For Our Children…Our Future…

Posted in Reflections, Thoughts About Children

“Thanksgiving…Everyday…”

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Being at a school with a diverse population, I have found this time of year is quite a stressful time for the children…In addition,with more expectations from such a demanding curriculum than ever before…So many of my children came to me struggling because their lives are so difficult..
As their teacher, I must keep the rigors of the classroom curriculum moving along with understanding and inspiration…I reach out to my young parents providing them with knowledge about providing their child a daily reading and homework time…Encouraging parents to put their child to bed at an early bedtime…I use myself as a role model for my parents and children…Because, I myself have to be ready for school by 6:30AM..I must be in bed by 7:30-8:00PM…I share so much of personal habits of organization with my children and their parents…
It is my hope that I will empower my children and parents to appreciate these values that will help their child to be successful in school…Some of my parents will, however many do not… Their child may struggle…

It will always be my responsibility to provide the safety and structure…Through this beautiful season of “Fall Holidays”…Providing Love and Giving Thanks…

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Posted in Reflections

“Fall” into Our Classroom…

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“Fall” is the season the magic begins…The learning has begun…

My first graders are becoming independent and showing signs of their confidence…
In the challenging times of overtesting…And the many demands we teachers face today, I strive to utilize my dramatic delivery in creating the facilitation of this exciting process…
We just enjoyed our first field trip to a local farm seeing the “beauty in nature of this season” and to pick our very own pumpkin…Now we have our school’s “Fall Festival” to look forward to!

What makes all this so special, teaching many children who come from challenging lives…I do feel I am making that difference…even though…I am “oh sooo”… exhausted!

Posted in Mission, Reflections

First Week…Back to School…

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I have always enjoyed the Friday before the beginning of the school year to meet my new students and their parents…I rely on just that brief meeting to begin making an assessment, when parent and child come in to meet me…
One important piece of pertinent information gained from this meeting is that I can begin to assess those children that may be outgoing or those that may be quite reserved….

The first week of school is the crucial time when I focus on establishing… “Our Relationship”, one that lets my children know I will love them unconditionally; providing a classroom for structure to inspire learning, and moreover, feel safe to accept and appreciate our differences…No matter what is presented…The foundation for a successful year ahead…