Rigor is creating an environment in which each student is expected to learn at high levels,
each student is supported so he or she can learn at high levels,
and each student demonstrates learning at high levels (Blackburn, 2008).

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

"I Can't Meet My Students' Needs"

During one of my recent workshops, a group of teachers said, "We can't meet our students' needs.  They've cut our budget, increased our class sizes, and shut down our tutoring programs.  There's nothing I can do."  That's a common refrain today, and I'm not minimizing it.  Teaching is more and more challenging, especially in today's educational climate.   However, I'm a big believer in control what you can control, and stop focusing on all the problems (please note I'm still in a remedial class learning that lesson myself!).  So I was heartened by a note left for me after last week's session on high expectations in Hillsborough County, Florida.  Here's what Darren Aguero wrote:

The most important thing I can give a student is free, readily available, and never affected by budget cuts....ENCOURAGEMENT!

Wow--what a perspective in the midst of the challenges. 

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