National Council of Teachers of English. 1111 West Kenyon Road, Urbana, IL 61801-1096. Tel: 877-369-6283; Tel: 217-328-3870; Web site: http://www.ncte.org/journals
Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
In this article, the author reflects on on his role in preparing English teachers. Leading into his twelfth year concerned with the art and science of teaching English, he wondered what exactly he could say or do to help them stick their toes in some uncertain waters. What could he say of an educational context bent on holding people--different by nature--to singular standards, 35 and 40 students per class, a climate where numbers and accountability trump all reason, and a time where the reform agenda has been hijacked by mega-corporations and decidedly tied to their department of education? The waters of teaching writ large seem to be murky at best, if not on the precipice of something far worse. The author thought back to the founders of NCTE and what they must have felt like 100 years ago. Surely some of the same emotions--overwhelmed, angry, uncertain, attacked--must have washed over them as they struggled against a 1912 version of shark-infested waters.