Thursday, July 17, 2008

Where Our Teachers Go To School

This past year, half of the teachers in the Matawan Aberdeen Regional School District, who acquired masters degrees, attended Marygrove College. According to Wikipedia, Marygrove is a Catholic liberal arts college “sponsored by the Sisters, Servants of the Immaculate Heart of Mary,” and “committed to fostering Christian values”.

Have our teachers found God or a way to game the system? Marygrove is located in Detroit Michigan. It awards masters degrees through a distance learning program. These teachers, like so many others in our school district, got their masters degrees through the internet.

During the 2007-2008 school year, eight teachers received masters degrees. Among these eight teachers, 75% of them got their degrees from attending classes online. Four teachers attended MaryGrove College and two attended Walden University. (I blacked out their names.)

As previously discussed, there is no evidence that advanced degrees improve learning. On the contrary, participants in Teach for America (primarily recruited from top universities), despite lacking experience or advanced degrees, perform far better than the average teacher.

That three-quarters of our teachers are now getting their masters from online universities is one reason we’re not getting any bang for our buck.

Using Marygrove as an example, the masters program is 30 credits and takes two years to complete. The total cost is $11,700 minus the $3,000 reimbursement from the school district. Talk about return on investment. After $8,700 in school expenses, the degree recipient receives $7,500 (adjusted upwards annually) for the rest of his teaching career.

As for the teacher’s newfound degree, it’s a Masters in the Art of Education. No, I don’t know what that means, either, but, to obtain a Masters in the Art of Education for Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment, K–12, a teacher must take courses in

  • Teacher as Leader
  • Understanding Teaching and Learning
  • Instructional Design
  • Effective Assessment
  • Teacher as Researcher
Perhaps I’m just old fashioned but, in my day, teachers were expected to know the material they taught. Not all experts are great teachers but every great teacher is an expert in his field. These fuzzy courses have zero relationship to the material being taught.

I’m not the only person who doesn’t recognize these masters degrees. Marygrove lost its accreditation from the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) over two years ago. Walden never even received professional accreditation for their masters program.

That’s right. We’re giving teachers a $7,500 raise for degrees that not even teachers recognize. It’s no surprise these teachers are all attending the same online schools. They likely found the cheapest/easiest track to a higher pay grade. The University of Phoenix, the nation’s largest online school, requires forty credits to Marygrove’s thirty and charges nearly $200 more per credit.

Kudos to Ms. Jennifer Barsi and Ms. Zebunisa Saeed. They went to real schools and got real degrees in real disciplines. Ms. Barsi received a masters degree from Kean University in Teacher of Handicapped. Ms. Saeed got her masters from Rutgers University in Mathematics Education. Too bad they represent a small minority.

No wonder fewer than half of our seniors pursue a four year college or university. They don’t value education any more than their teachers do. >>> Read more!

91 comments:

brianinthebeach said...

I cannot say I am shocked. I did say in an earlier post by you that most of our high school grads go to Brookdale, which I find discouraging. One of your other bloggers said kudos for kids staying local, I say bad job by our teachers and school district!
A four year university or college may not be for everyone but the amount of grads that attend these two year colleges is disgraceful!
Good find by the Aberdeener, again.

Anonymous said...

Back when I received my Bachelors Degree in 1983, most Master Degrees were 60 credits. Isn't this just one more example of how everything in this school district is more for apperance(and profit for the teachers) than actual quality of education.

I know of kids who went to Brookdale, barely took 12 credits a semester and took three years to get out. It is unbelievable how poorly prepared Matawan HS graduates are.

PS: these are not children that needed to work to help support their families. Just kids that weren't used to working hard to accopmlish a goal.

Keep up the great blogs Aberdeener!

Anonymous said...

Another example of how the system works for the union and not the students. When is the public finally going to say enough is enough to this union and demand some accountability. Aberdeener, you should check administration also. Tanzini was here.

Anonymous said...

You snobby, pompous, elitist. How can you sit there and cry week and after week about teachers and ALL of their short comings and then cry like a baby when some go out and try to improve the ways of their profession. Any and all master's credits that are accepted by MARSD must also be accepted by Rutgers U. in order to count.

Are you so blind wrapped up in your own tunnel vision to know that even the best schools in our area do correspondance courses. Did you also know that almost all of the neighboring districts also accept these degrees. Have you ever looked into what is expected? Do you know how these people are graded? Do you know what the professors of these places ask of their students? NO........ you want to paint the dirty picture of our town and our schools and our BOE. You must really be bitter in that I believe you are relatively new to the area. You would have been insane by now if you had lived here longer judging by your constant - the future is bleak - message week after week. Some articles have GREAT relevance, and others look like you are bored and want to hear your self speak and shake more hands at meetings when you introduce yourself as = THE ABERDEENER = whoopty do !!!

There has been a rise in salary in our district and almost all others for a master's degree for MANY YEARS. Some teachers are doing after school activities, clubs, athletics, and EVEN HAVE FAMILIES OF THEIR OWN !! and some of these programs are very befitting a teacher's lifestyle - but of course you find the rotten end of it and point out a pay raise as motivation - how dare you!!! Check facts - your school district has some of the best and most well rounded teachers in our area and also offers one of the best educations around including the 2 local private schools.

But I am sure this will be refuted and blasted by your cronies on here who love to bash the town in which they live - just to make a name for themselves. That is why the anon. posts were disallowed I believe, because people like me do not kowtow to the almighty ABERDEENER and his RAT pack. What happened to 1st amendment? Why the annonymous post shut down? If people write something malicious or inflamitory - then take it off---- you run the blog.

Let us see where my coming to the defense of teachers - the "terrible" people who spend more time with your kids than many of you do - and that is not a dig or nasty comment - in some cases - a fact.... God forbid they DO SOMETHING/ ANYTHING to enhance their skills........

Anonymous said...

Let me clarify the above -

1. I did not read the previous article and therefore did not see your reasoning for taking out anon. posts - I now know - but I still think all posts are not equally considered if they present an alternative opinion- that does not include malicious statements.

Though the passion in which I wrote the previous post holds true because I do not think ALL aspects of MARSD are as rotten as they made out to be here on this blog.... BUT I will be fair and reiterate the IMPORTANCE of this blog and MANY of the topics it discusses.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Brianinthebeach-

What is wrong with Brookdale? What makes you believe it is such a sub standard institution?

Have you done research into seeing how advanced Brookdale is? Or the hundreds of courses it offers our young, middle aged returning to school, or seniors furthering education?

How about the money situation? Do you know what 4 year colleges cost? Do you also know that if you obtain a 60 credit AA from Brookdale, all of those credits transfer to ANY state school?

I am not sure of your money situation, but I say good job to students who choose Brookdale and complete schooling there rather than in some cases, go to a 4 year school, do not do as well as expected, leave and waste thousands of dollars.

When you enter either Brookdale or a 4 year school - most of the first 2 years is the same basic math, english, science, history, and language anyway - so, in essence, Brookdale may ACTUALLY be a wise choice for the many you are lambasting. Good for MRHS to push their students in the direction of ANY higher education after HS. Look at other schools in our area and see what their kids do before making such harsh comments......

Anonymous said...

At least we can all be certain it ain't "brain"inthebeach.

Anonymous said...

What do you get when you combine a disgruntled, misinformed, crusader who is a self-proclaimed expert in everything with a grimy keyboard and a mouse? Thats correct, you get the creator of the “Aberdeener,” a poorly designed website where faceless idiots and losers can go to find solace in one another's ignorance.

Much like the obese drunkards who critiqued the Vietnam Conflict from the comfort of their barstools, and the Bill Clinton worshipers and social engineers of the world; the Aberdeener is nothing more than a worthless, non-peer reviewed information portal where the have-nots can go to vent their frustrations about a system they themselves have enabled.

In the latest rant, we see that the creator of the Aberdeener is now qualified to determine the best venue to receive a quality education http://www.aberdeener.com/2008/07/where-our-teachers-go-to-school.html. In support of the opinions posted, the creator of the Aberdeener relies upon Wikipedia.com to bolster his opinion. Yet, anyone with a degree in a recognized discipline from an accredited institution of higher learning knows that the website Wikipedia.com is not peer reviewed, and therefore cannot be used as a citation for any reference or source of information in MLA, APA, Urabian, or Chicago Citation styles of writing. (If the three of you who regularly post to the Aberdeener would like learn more about peer reviewing or the various writing styles then feel free to educate yourself on a reputable website, or perhaps even a book, that is accepted by scholars)

Why not trust Wikipedia or similar forums? Because, much like the Aberdeener, anyone can post their own unchallenged thoughts and beliefs without any supporting empirical evidence. People have spent countless hours conducting research with supporting, testable evidence, and these forums severely diminish their efforts. But apparently this does not bother the creator of the Aberdeener or the few lifeless regulars who post there, because if they were to educate themselves and find out that the Aberdeener is worthless, then they would have to go back to adjusting their shorts from the comfort of their easy chairs rather than spending their free time being “yes men” and agreeing with nonsense.

Several accredited, well respected institutions of higher education have realized that great potential exists in the mind of the adult learner, and have embraced and supplemented the experience and maturity that is often found by someone already working in the discipline by offering degrees via distant learning. In fact, if I were a betting person I would bet that if a graduate of distant learning were to be challenged by a graduate of a traditional brick and mortar institution (you know the ones where kids get an opportunity to leave there parents and party like rock stars for $30,000.00 a year) to write a research paper, or face an oral board, that the distant learner would prove to be the one who is clearly more well versed in the discipline.

Do us all a favor Aberdeener, rather than worrying about what school board member's kid got some B.S. job in the district, start spending your time preparing your own children for the likes of the one-sided fools such as yourself they will surely encounter throughout their lives. Imagine the energy savings (and attorney fees) the district would realize if the spineless board members were not bullied into listening to your rhetoric. And remember, our great nation was founded upon the “Christian values” that you use as a punchline to attract the feeble minded bloggers to this worthless website.

Anonymous said...

It ain't brain in the beach -good one! Nice grammar, Brookdale grad?

If you re-read, you will see I say a 4 year college may not be for everyone! What I find upsetting is the amount of students who attend Brookdale. They go because they cannot get in to better universities for the most part, not because of economics, because of poor academics. Brookdale is a good community college but that is just it, it is a fine TWO YEAR COLLEGE. Have you ever looked to where they go after Brookdale? A large portion drop out or don't even continue with their academics after their 2 years.

If you or the parents can't afford a better school I understand. I have no issues with that, but don't sit there and say it is a great place to go. This is taken directly from the admissions page of Brookdale:

Brookdale is an open admission college, available to anyone 18 years of age or older, anyone who is a high school graduate or holder of an equivalency diploma. (The Culinary and Health programs have additional admission criteria).

If you do not have a high school diploma or an equivalency diploma, you may still enroll at Brookdale as long as you are 18 or older.

Even if you don't have a high school diploma you can get in, tough standards!

As for me I am just a hard working, middleclass wage earner with a Master's degree and an opinion, but most of all a desire for more for my children.

I love when someone has a different opinion on a subject and then they are attacked for saying such a thing. PS I didn't feel my comments were harsh, I am sorry you took them that way; it is more a criticism towards our teachers and the education our children are receiving.

Brian in the beach

Anonymous said...

At least a majority didn't earn their masters from the Online Univeristy of Pheonix!

LOL... What a joke!!

For all those teachers reading this.. do you think your students would learn from you if you taught an online class??

HAHAHA

They aren't even learning when you have them in your class!!

Do me a favor and try getting a masters degree from an Accredited University; if you can get into one.


Rob Lloyd Rd.

Anonymous said...

July 17 the app.com had a great article on how Freehold is challenging a few of the doctorate's that teachers have earned.

http://www.app.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2008807170543

It seems that some of these on line schools are just diploma mills.

Anonymous said...

As of June 16, 2008 Marygrove is not on the list of NCATE Accredited Schools, Colleges,
and Departments of Education for Michigan

NCATE - National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education.

Maybe we should take a page from Freehold.

mrsb said...

I am one of the regular posters to the Aberdeener. I would like to say that I think it's wrong of you to lump everyone in together as a bunch of mindless drones for coming here. I had not posted to this discussion yet.

I will not post an opinion on the long distance learning issue, because I don't know enough about it. I will say that I looked into taking courses on the computer when I when I started taking classes as an adult parent of three. Trying to take a full schedule of classes while juggling a family is not an easy thing to do.

I will also say that when I did start taking classes, I took them at Brookdale. It was close by, the price was right, and the most of the credits will transfer when/if I want to continue into a four year college.

I am also urging my high school age son to do his first 2 years at Brookdale. Both for financial reasons, and because he has no clue as to what he wants to do with his life yet. Better to get the basics out of the way at a cost we can afford than to throw thousands away while he tries to make a decision.

I would guess that most of the teachers in the district have families they are supporting and caring for. I don't think that getting a masters degree from a long distance course is necessarily a bad thing.

And if they are doing it purely to make more money? I don't see that as a bad thing, either. Who doesn't want to make more money in their job?

If it were to turn out that these institutions did not give a quality education, I believe it should be the BOE's responsibility to exclude them from the system.

I come to this blog to read everyone's opinion on the local issues, and to learn more from all of them. Sometimes I agree with the Aberdeener, some times I don't. Sometimes I start off agreeing, and after reading the comments, realize that I don't. I really do believe that that is what the Aberdeener is going for here.

As he does post differing opinions, and he has turned back on the anonymous posting to make sure that everyone has the chance to post. And he is not afraid to post comments that are negative towards himself.

I would like to see more people posting without the personal attacks and name calling. I know it's hard (and I've been guilty of it in the past, myself) when you feel so strongly about an issue. But wouldn't it be better to share your views and let people make up their minds from the facts/opinions that you have to offer.

I know this is long, but one last issue I'd like to address: attacking anyone's religious views is just not cool - no matter which side of an argument you are on. The U.S. was not founded on Christian beliefs, it was founded on religious freedom.

"...the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion... -John Adams"

Anonymous said...

Nova is not listed-is that accredited?

Anonymous said...

nova is accredited

Aberdeener said...

I'm happy to see so many people once again posting comments to this site. I just have to remind everyone that I don't want to see personal attacks against other commenters. When one person personally attacks another, he’s not promoting his own opinion but trying to suppress the other’s opinion. I wish to have a forum that encourages debate and I reserve the right to delete any comment that seeks to intimidate another from voicing his opinions.

Should anyone ever feel the need to attack someone, please attack me. Not only can I take it, I see it as a sign of respect that someone feels the need to repudiate my remarks.

Regarding the use of Wikipedia, these are the guidelines I use –
1) It cannot be the sole source of information
2) It cannot be information that is critical or central to the argument
3) It is information that can be verified elsewhere

In the above article, I used Wikipedia to cite Marygrove’s mission, which can also be found here on the school’s website. Here’s confirmation Marygrove was denied accreditation.

I sometimes quote from Wikipedia to demonstrate how readily accessible this information is to any school board member or other official who chooses to spend the time to research these issues.

As for online schooling and Brookdale, I support both. My wife is presently taking online courses, sponsored by SUNY, in Human Resource Management. I have taken adult education classes at Brookdale. My issue here is that teachers are being rewarded $7,500 a year for masters degrees regardless of a degree’s merit or impact on the classroom.

I support the corporate policy of reimbursing the costs of education but basing salary upon role and performance. Let’s reimburse a teacher’s education at 80% and pay a performance bonus. This way, teachers will be driven to those courses that actually improve learning.

Brian raises a good question regarding Brookdale. Are large numbers of graduates attending Brookdale because of its open admissions policy or, as is the case for MrsB, for financial reasons?

Once again, I’d like to thank everyone for taking the time to participate in this discussion. I look forward to having more civil debates in the future.

Anonymous said...

There is simply no defense to awarding a stipend for a degree from non-accredited diploma mills. The Board of Ed should revoke stipends from those non-esteemed institutions.

Givemea break! said...

The teachers do not get a stipend. That is usually for extracurricular activites. My understanding is that getting a "higher degree" gets you a bump in pay based on the contract w/ the Techers Union. This should be an item in the next negotiation w/ the Union.

Anonymous said...

I have absolutely no problem with a teacher or administrator getting paid extra (whether you call it a stipend or base pay boost) for a legitimate post-graduate degree. It is not unreasonable to say that a diploma mill degree should not be rewarded in the same way as a degree from an accredited college or university.

Our teachers who work hard to earn post-grad degrees from real programs, while working full-time deserve the increase in salary that they get. Based on my experience we have excellent teachers in the district.

The problem is that the Superintendent has to enforce a basic premise that degrees must be from accredited schools. This is basic, not something that has to be negotiated. It is the least we can do to preserve the value of degrees earned by teachers that worked hard for them.

I also have a problem with people on the blog that criticize this district based on a warped view of statistics without understanding the uniqueness our district; however, ruling out diploma mills as acceptable institutions of higher learning is just sound public policy and should be addressed by the Superintendent and Board of Education. What would be next -- accepting the Readers Digest as an alternative to textbooks?

Woey Jarren said...

What happened to the "no anonymous" rule? It's just a lot easier to understand who is talking in each post.

Otherwise, I'd like to say a few things. Brookdale is a fine choice for anyone who is looking for post-high school education. I think one of the anonymous posts brought up the fact that financially, Brookdale can give an excellent education for the cost. Sometimes I think about all of the student loans I have and wish that I had given Brookdale more consideration. I'm sure most of you know that if you score high enough on the SAT's and have a high GPA, Brookdale will educate you for free, and then send you to another school (Rutgers, Monmouth University), to complete your four years. I know many students who would be appalled to hear that others believe they are "disgraceful" or "poorly prepared." They have worked hard for their educations and have chosen to stay financially sound by going to Brookdale.

That being said, I know this is my first post, but I have been following the Aberdeener for a long time. I rarely agree with him, but I strongly believe in keeping this blog "troll" free. Please refrain from personal attacks - its extremely childish. Also, I will back up the Aberdeener's usage of Wikipedia. Although anyone can edit or add to an article, most changes are reviewed by editors who will deem it relevant or correct. Almost any important information on Wikipedia is cited by a little number, which links to a credible source.

Finally, many of the comments use facts without any source, such as the idea that most people go to Brookdale because of poor education rather than economics or that a large portion of Brookdale students drop out after two years. Whether or not this information is correct, it would still be nice to have some sort of source.

Aberdeener said...

To be clear, the two schools cited in the article, Marygrove and Walden, are not diploma mills. Both schools are accredited by an organization recognized by the US Department of Education. The problem is that their masters programs do not have any professional accreditation.

This means that any college in the country, so long as it is accredited, can create an online masters program of any caliber and that degree will be recognized by the district. Given the thousands of colleges, there will always be a couple that seek to boost enrollment by making the courses easier and cheaper and, it appears, our teachers are being drawn to those programs.

Aside from boosting salaries, I don't see how this benefits anyone.

Anonymous said...

Taken from Brookdale's web site:

BROOKDALE COMMUNITY COLLEGE COLLEGE REGULATION 5.0034R

I. Title of RegulationPre-Registration Testing/Basic Skills

II. Objective of RegulationThe College recognizes that some students may arrive at Brookdale academically under-prepared for college level courses. To help prepare students to succeed in college and to ensure the integrity of college-level courses, courses in basic skills reading, writing and mathematics are provided as part of a comprehensive Basic Skills program.

They acknowledge that some students are academically under-prepared for college level courses. Shouldn't high school take care of that?

mrsb said...

Even middle school should have taken care of that for the average student. I think that Brookdale's basic skills options are more for kids who have struggled through school, adults who are going back to school after many years and need a refresher, and to give people with learning differences a chance to bolster their skills.

The basic skills classes are not for credit, so even if you take them, you still have to take the same classes as everyone else before you get any sort of degree from Brookdale.

Anonymous said...

from the National Center for Educational Statistics

Retention Rates
First-time student retention

Retention rates measure the percentage of entering students who continue their studies the following fall.

FT - 65%
PT -47%

Graduation rates for full-time, first-time undergraduates who began program in 2003

Percentage of entering students counted in calculating graduation rate: 66%

Overall graduation rate: 17%
Transfer out rate: 20%


from collegefinder.com

Male Graduation Rate:17%
Female Graduation Rate:21%
African-American Graduation Rate:6%Hispanic Graduation Rate:19%American Indian Graduation Rate:50%Asian Graduation Rate:26%
White Graduation Rate:20%
Unknown Race Graduation Rate:19%Full-time Student Retention Rate:66%
Part-time Student Retention Rate:46%

from Brookdale

The two and three year combined success rates by income category for Fall 2003 of first-time, full-time freshman:

Low Income - 380 students, graduate in 2 years 19 - 5%
graduate in 3 years 39 - 10.3%

Not Low Income - 854 students, graduate in 2 years 73 - 8.5%
graduate in 3 years 157 - 18.4%

Unknown Income - 1093 students, graduate in 2 years 63 - 5.8%
graduate in 3 years 188 - 17.2%

success rate is defined as graduated within 2 years or transferred to a NJ Senior Public Institution.


Three different sources, take from it what you want. Not great numbers. I would once again say I am not trying to bash BCC, I believe it suits a purpose, but why are so many of our students going there? I do believe it has more to do with the education our children are receiving, more so, than economics.

Brian in Aberdeen

Anonymous said...

I was the one who left the first long annon. comment - I apologize for the name calling of the Aberdeener....

1. BCC is a good school that HAS MANY USES by many DIFFERENT types of residents of our area. Yes it has courses THAT HELP THOSE WHO need a boost in some of their skills before other courses are taken and GUESS WHAT? Not just MRHS kids take those courses that MrsB talked about !!! Shocker?

In fact, unlike Brian, I applaud BCC for giving MANY KIDS AND PEOPLE a CHANCE at secondary education. And why does this UPSET you as you wrote? I don't get it...... agenda?

2. MrsB - I rarely agree with you but I must say that is one of your most intelligent posts.

And whoever wrote that Mat- Ab. is unique compared to neighboring towns = you are correct

3. ABERDEENER - thank you for at least writing later on that Marygrove and Walden are NOT diploma mills and ARE recogized by the US Dept. of ED.

4. MOST IMPORTANT FACT - MARSD ONLY WILL ACCEPT DISTANCE LEARNING COURSES that Rutgers U. accepts. So is Rutgers wrong too? Why don't all of the nay-sayers write Rutgers and tell them how wrong they are? Tell them that posters here are more intelligent than those who run RU and that they should not accept credits from these two schools. We know more than Doctors of Ed. at RU...... right?

5. It is not a 7500 dollar raise... it is a - more like 5000 or so..... from what I have read

6. After rereaing the post, who cares what these schools charge? The U. of Phoenix charges more so they are better? But if a teacher does anything like this to improve, it is not good enough? It is blamed on money motivation - how cynical is everyone?

7. Freehold district is looking into the validity of the DOCTORATE online course ..... different animal....

8. And yes, I am sure some teachers like you who wrote in have a lot on their plate may use these courses as convenience, not because you think they are easier.

I looked around and researched what one of these programs asks of a student:

a. watch 2 hours of video lecture per week with questions that follow

b. read over 50 pages per week with questions that follow

c. write btwn. 6- 8 pages based on video lecture and books read -emailed to a professor weekly who reads and responds

d. weekly projects and creation of lessons that could be used in a classroom

e. a separate 30 page reasearch paper independent of weekly work

f. a portfolio presentation at the end of the program independent of a regular work
- So besides getting in a car and driving 40 min. to a school, it sounds like serious work to me.......

Anonymous said...

Studies on Online Accredited Degrees.

"Numerous studies have proven that students obtaining online college degrees from accredited colleges and universities perform as well or better than their on-campus counterparts. The book 'The No Significant Difference Phenomenon' by Thomas L. Russell cites 355 research reports, papers, and summaries dating back to 1928 that found no significant difference between an online college education and in-class learning (2001, IDECC, 5th Ed.). Where a difference was identified, it generally favored the student obtaining an online accredited education from an online college!”

Accredited Online Colleges (2008). Retrieved July 21, 2008, from the World Wide Web http://www.accredited-online-colleges.com/

Russell, T. (2001). Retrieved July 21, 2008, from the World Wide Web http://www.nosignificant
difference.org/

Russell, T. (2001). “The No Significant Difference Phenomenon.” IDECC. Littleton, CO.

Anonymous said...

In 1928 people where on line taking classes?

Anonymous said...

For the purpose of the posting regarding the work of Thomas Russell, “online” is a generic term that, by definition, implies that the student is separated from the faculty. Obviously Internet learning was not available in 1928, but other forms of distant and correspondence learning were. I should have realized that the terminology, rather than the facts, would have been disputed in this forum.

Aberdeener said...

Regarding the recent comment citing "numerous studies", the quote is taken from www.accredited-online-colleges.com.

I'd be leery of using a site that promotes online schooling as a source for evidence.

What's important to remember is that Marygrove was denied professional certification.

As for the acceptability of an online degree, the marketplace has spoken.

Anonymous said...

Regarding the question of Nova Southeastern University being accredited, the Fischler School of Education is the largest education school in the country and is now offering classes in NJ. Up until this point, students attended classes in PA.

Here is the link to the story:
http://www.reuters.com/article/pressRelease/idUS164549+30-Jun-2008+MW20080630

Anonymous said...

Check out all of these diploma mills that offer online education programs and degrees. Harvard, UMass, Penn State, Rutgers, Monmouth, NJIT, and even the coveted Kean University. I guess we should poke fun at these instutions as well.

http://www.extension.
harvard.edu/2008-09/DistanceEd/

http://www.umassonline.
net/Home.html

http://www.worldcampus.
psu.edu/

http://ce1766.rutgers.edu/online
.jsp

http://www.monmouth.edu
/admission/online.asp

http://adultlearner.
njit.edu/faqs/elearning.
php

http://www.kean.edu/~de
/webct.htm

Aberdeener said...

Pardon my ignorance but which of these fine universities has an online degree program? I see online courses, which I support, but I don't see any of these universities offering an online degree program that enables a student to fulfill all of his degree requirements through the internet.

Once again, we are discussing online degree programs that lack professional accreditation.

Anonymous said...

I think the problem is if they are not accredited, distant learning can be a valuable tool.

Anonymous said...

Seton Hall

http://www.shu.edu/
academics/
setonworldwide/online-education-faqs.html

NJIT

http://adultlearner.
njit.edu/faqs/
elearning.php#entire

UMass

http://www.umassonline
.net/DegreeBrowse.cfm


Seton Hall University Admission Policy for Online Education.

What is the admission policy?

"There is no distinction in the admission policies of the SetonWorldWide online programs and their on-campus counterparts. SetonWorldWide faculty work collaboratively with Seton Hall’s on-campus academic programs (many also serve as faculty in these programs) to develop and support the online degree and certificate programs. SetonWorldWide and Seton Hall are committed to providing the same thought-provoking and rigorous learning experiences. The only difference -- the delivery method."

"Specifically designed for professionals with a demonstrated significant achievement in their respective fields, SetonWorldWide programs are perfect for those who have the ability, desire and dedication to accept the rigors of a fast-paced, challenging curriculum; balance the demands of myriad personal and professional commitments; and maintain high standards of integrity and productivity."

Source

http://www.shu.edu/
academics/
setonworldwide/online-education-faqs.html

Aberdeener said...

Thanks for providing the link to Seton Hall. Quoting from the same page -

"[T]he M.A., School Counseling is accredited by the National Council of Excellence in Teacher Preparation and is approved by the New Jersey Department of Education. The online College of Nursing programs -- M.S.N., Nurse Practitioner; M.S.N., Health Systems Administration; and R.N. to B.S.N. -- are accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education and the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission.

The M.A. in Education, Leadership, Management and Policy is accredited by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE)."

These programs have professional accreditation. Therein lies the difference.

Anonymous said...

It seems to me, there is enough information out there that refutes what was the original point. That some online degrees do have relevance. COUPLE THAT ITEM WITH THE FACT that MARSD does NOT accept any and all degrees as what was insinuated.

The question: Will the Aberdeener and Brianinthebeach admit they MAY be a little off in their opinions..?? (this ought to be good)

Lloyd Rd Rob said...

This question is for the teachers:

If you taught 2 classes to your students; an online course and a classroom. Which group would have a better retention rate and perform better on exams?

ANSWER HONESTLY.. and that should end this discussion.

Anonymous said...

It's called pay for play , The teachers play the role, send their payment in get the degree, WE tax payers play!!! Time for the administration and school board to weed the freeloaders out "BEFORE" they get tenure!!!!

Anonymous said...

Don't know if I am off on my opinion? I feel like the school system is letting down our students, that is why they are attending Brookdale and not better colleges or universities. That has been my stance on this topic. Again, I think Brookdale serves a purpose but I am disappointed by how many students go there.

I don't believe that it is because of economics that so many attend Brookdale, I think it is because of a lack of proper education in our schools. Teachers and parents are to blame and well as, the administration. As tax payers we pay a great deal into our school system and this is what we have to show for it? Look at the graduation rate at Brookdale? or how many continue on, it is poor at best.

If your child tells you he just was accepted to Rutgers, Seton Hall, or Princeton would you not be more excited than him/her saying I am going to Brookdale? These students are going to Brookdale because they are not receiving the proper education in my opinion. That is just my opinion, right or wrong, agree or disagree, it is okay with me.

If students go there for the first two years and transfer out because they want to save themselves and/or parents money, GREAT. If they cannot afford another school, I understand. If they are going there because every other school declined their admission, well there in lies my problem.

Brian in Aberdeen

Anonymous said...

llyod rd rob has a good point, do you believe you would learn more from sitting in a class or at a computer.

I know for me it would be a classroom, I can interact with the teacher and students. I can get immediate feedback, ask questions and hear questions from other students, that may spark another question from me. I can be challenged and challenge and learn from others.

Brian in Aberdeen

Anonymous said...

Some Misconceptions about Online Education

People who have little or no experience with online learning or teaching tend to harbor some misconceptions (which are quickly cleared up after actual participation in online classes). The most common misconception is that online classes will be fairly sterile and impersonal. But once a person starts to interact with other group members, they quickly discover that an online learning environment can be very rich and very personal. Participants often establish online friendships which outlast the particular class. Furthermore, people typically find that they are drawn into the subject matter of the class much more deeply than in a traditional course because of the discussions they get involved in.

Another common misconception is that online classes will be easy -- easier than conventional classes. But almost all participants report that they find online classes much more work -- and much more rewarding -- than traditional courses they have taken. Again, this has to do with the amount of thought about the subject matter that results from online discussions. Such classes also require the self-discipline to do the preparation required for online participation and activities -- homework is homework, whether online or offline!

Finally it should be mentioned that almost any form of assessment or evaluation is possible with online classes. You can do traditional quizzes or tests with multiple choice questions or problems to be solved if you want; they can even be done with time limits. However, it seems that assignments and projects that involve critical thinking, creativity, problem-solving and group discussion/interaction are more appropriate for online education.

Kearsley, G. (2000). "A Guide to Online Education." Wadsworth-Cenage: Florence, Ky.

mrsb said...

I'm not a teacher, but I think that the scores would be split somewhat. I think there are plenty of students (I'm assuming we are talking about high school age, who would have the ability and determination to work individually online) that would actually benefit from working at their own pace online, with the ability to review the information repeatedly.

Of course there are students who would not do as well or are not motivated to keep with the work. But we are discussing adults who are disciplined and motivated to do the work and to learn.

Of course it would be great if every teacher (here and everywhere else) had a masters degree in the subject that they taught. But the reality is, the teachers are getting masters degrees through a school that the board approves.

I just don't see the difference between grown professional adults getting a degree through the internet or taking the classes in person. What teacher with a family could possibly take the time off from their job to go take classes full time?

And in this day and age, when we worry about how we will pay for our mortgage, must less our children's educations, who doesn't need to consider the least inexpensive way to go about improving our earning potential?

If there is a question of the legitimacy of the degree, I believe it would be best to take it up with Rutgers or the BOE, and not blame the teachers for trying to better themselves and their financial situations (which is what so many of us are striving to do).

Anonymous said...

Well here in lies the question:

If you were to ask if a teacher taught an online class to youth- where would his/her students obtain the most information with retention - internet or classroom?

Let us remember that teachers who take on line courses ARE ADULTS who you WOULD HOPE will take these classes seriously. DO NOT compare a educational professional with a 16 year old kid who has a million other things going on. The teacher who takes the online course is doing it to better their skills as a PROFESSIONAL EDUCATOR of others......

There seems to be a lot of disdain for teachers as I read this blog and posts - if you are so distrustful - where are you at BOE meetings or school parent nights questioning these individuals or learning more about them? Why not conversate about the many theories or practices of teaching... Why not discuss Bloom's Taxonomy with a teacher or give suggestions how to educate 125 different personalities with 125 different learning levels and learning styles?

Truth is - Many of you cannot or just DO NOT - and does not make anyone a bad person or less intelligent. I am not dissing the non-teacher in the least. I would not go to AT and T in Middletown or Dearborn Farms in Holmdel and tell them how to do their job without looking into it first and forming an educated opinion. A lot people must have had some pretty bad exeriences with teachers in their past and are taking it out on today's teachers as a result.

Facts are: the online courses, while they may take out the driving time and even some classroom interaction with 10 to 15 others, do serve an important role for teachers who are looking to better themselves in a time effective manner. Do they cost less? yes... Are they still useful to the teacher of today? yes

There was a comment in the original that teachers should know the material. These courses are POST GRADUATE.... the same as an auto mechanic studies new car features - the teacher is keeping up with the times and new ideas, thoughts, and methods. I would hope that people would be happy their child's educator is looking to better themselves for the benefit of the children in MARSD or any school for that matter.

WHO CARES IF THEY GET IN A CAR snd drive TO DO IT?

And yes there is a pay bump. If someone at AT and T furthers themselves and becomes better at their job due to extra course work, they are compensated as well.

Teachers seem to be damned if they do and damned if they don't. Hey.......... there is a teacher shortage in our state and many Southern states where Northerners are moving. If teaching is so easy and elementary - why don't many of the detractors become teachers? How about run for school board and help mold guidelines? Apparently there is a teacher shortage and BOE candidate shortage as well judging by the past few elections in our town. Here is a novel American idea - go vote in the first place.....

either way there are much bigger fish to fry than if a teacher gets in a car to go to school or does it from home.....

I wrote a few more pressing issues in a comment in the previous post about AGENDAS ... there are some REAL ABERDEEN BASED IMPORTANT ISSUES......

Anonymous said...

Wow, MrsB posted posted while I wrote, and we seem to agree !!

Aberdeener said...

My complaint is that the system is encouraging teachers to seek the cheapest and easiest degree programs out there. Marygrove was denied professional accreditation by the NCATE. Notice nobody chose to attend Seton Hall's fully accredited online program.

May I suggest the following -
Let's double the tuition reimbursement rate for any program that has a recognized professional accreditation. The cost would be less than .05% of our school budget.

Anonymous said...

I see that one of the respondents to this original posts uses sarcasm to bash the University of Phoenix. The sarcastic post includes “HAHAHA,” and states the university is not accredited. My point here is not to defend the University of Phoenix, but to point out the ignorance of the commenter who laughs at his own jokes.

The University of Phoenix is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (http://www.ncacasi.org/). The accreditation has been reaffirmed five times since the initial accreditation, and is due to be reaffirmed once again in 2012. The University enjoys national as well as regional accreditation status. Regional accreditation is an institutional-level accreditation status granted by one of the six U.S. regional accrediting bodies (http://www.advanc-ed.org/schools_districts
/school_district_listings
/?).

More specific to this posting, the University's Master of Arts in Education program with options in Elementary Teacher Education and Secondary Teacher Education is preaccredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC) for a period of five years, from December 20, 2007 to December 20, 2012 (http://www.teac.org/).

Please folks, do your homework rather than shoot nonsense from the hip.

mrsb said...

Quite frankly, I'm not sure that having a masters degree is really going to make that much of a difference in how many teachers teach our kids in the first place.

Teachers that are really motivated to do the best for their students will find ways to keep up with the newest and best ways to help their students. They will take the professional development workshops offered around the area. They will keep track, through periodicals and through the internet on what's new and exciting in education. They will learn through years of experience what works for kids with different styles of learning. They will take classes that pertain to their subjects and bettering themselves as teachers, whether they are online, in person, or add up to another degree.

We should, really, forget about rewarding teachers for a piece of paper, and start rewarding all the great teachers out there that actually do a good job teaching their students. Who strive to learn how to help them. Who make a real difference. Give them a bonus. Give them some recognition.

Forget tenure for those who've just been there the longest. Forget pay raises because you can afford to get a degree at a fancy school.

Let's pay more to the teachers who do their jobs and do them well.

I can honestly say, through my 9 years of having kids in the district, I have had such a great experience with the special ed teachers, the enrichment teachers, and everyone in between.

Yes, I have had some negative comments in the past about the system, the BOE in general, and had issues with the district's CST. But I believe the teachers in this district are some of the best, who often have their hands tied by some policy or another - and are forced to "teach to the test" for standardized testing.

If something in this district is broke, I don't believe it starts with the teachers.

Rob Lloyd Rd said...

In Response to:

Let us remember that teachers who take on line courses ARE ADULTS who you WOULD HOPE will take these classes seriously. DO NOT compare a educational professional with a 16 year old kid who has a million other things going on. The teacher who takes the online course is doing it to better their skills as a PROFESSIONAL EDUCATOR of others......


OK..

First off, most teachers are married and have families themselves. so they indeeed have a million things going on AT HOME where as a 16 year has it going on outdoors.

Second, how do you apply what you learned from a non-accredited online Masters Program to children???


Can you please answer the second part of my response!!

Lloyd Road Rob said...

HaHAhAHA.. That's what I have to say about the University of Pheonix.

It's a diploma mill.. I'm in the corporate sector and I don't know any Human Resource Director that would take that degree serious.

Oh wait.. but I'm ignorant and your a teacher. So you must be right. Get out of your little bubble and try to make it in the real world.

Anonymous said...

Lloyd Rd. Bob? Your education is showing. "Your a teacher" should be "you're a teacher." Which brings me to this question. I wonder how many Matawan teachers attended the Matawan school system as children? I think this misguided hiring practice should be discouraged. It only perpetrates the weaknesses in the system.

Anonymous said...

Well if you look around.... there are quite a few of them..... and how dare you make that statement?

I applaud the district who hires their own to teach our youth. I am so mad at that statement, I am almost not able to write a response that would not be taken off this blog. It is call a connection and relationship and pride - NOT A WEAKNESS

A lot of those people who went there must have some sense of pride and felt it as a way to give back.

I know a few of them personally, and they are great people, who genuinely care about this town, it's people, and the youth.

Good for you that you did write anonymously because you would have many people who think the way that I do about those Matawan grads mad at you.

And it sounds like you condemn anyone who attended our schools- meaning you are probably a newcomer to this area and I bet have no real attachment to our besides having to choose which pizza place or ice cream shop to go to..........

What an ignorant statement........

Rod Lloyd Rd said...

Why is it when a teacher is losing an argument they begin critiquing trivial grammatical errors as if that is the judge of one’s intelligence?

Let’s get one thing straight, WE ARE NOT IN YOUR CLASSROOM!! So if I choose to misspell, too bad. As long as my point is clearly made and understood.
If I were to be graded on this blog then I would proofread. So since I don’t then screw it!

Anonymous said...

Well Lloyd Rd. Rob- if you read what that person said - it doesn't sound like they are a teacher if they are bashing the fact that people who went to MRHS now teach there.... but I have a nonmalicious comment to you.

1. You use the term "real world". If you look at some of the teachers salaries comapared ONLY WHAT OTHERS MAKE BASED ON EDUCATION AND YEARS OF EXPERIENCE -(I'm not championing for teachers to make more here) - a person in the professional sector with a let's say a degree from Kean - master's from ?? - Monmouth or Jersey City Univeristy - and about 20 years experience WOULD BE making a lot more than about 80,000that a MARSD or ANY other teacher in NJ makes..... combine that math with statistics and the teacher makes less than I bet more than half of the people living in parts of Aberdeen and Matawan.

Secondly, you ask a poster to answer how a teacher takes a master's and helps children. These masters being accepted by MARSD are not in typewriter repair or something - most of these arguments are directed at the masters in education. If you investigate what those programs entail- they do seem to enhance a teacher's skills - and according to another poster - the district DOES NOT accept degrees from ANY RUN OF THE MILL INSTITUTION....

Anonymous said...

Actually the teachers (or whomever they are) have won the argument. An valid argument is based on facts, not the opinion of one frustrated resident of Lloyd Rd. None of the statements made by this person include any facts or supporting documentation. They are simply a myriad of meaningless keystrokes supported by ignorance. Posts such as these severely undermine the validity of the blog and take away from the intelligent debates that could potentially occur here. Notice that none of the facts posted by the (teachers) are disputed, because they cannot be. Once this occurs, people resort to and rely upon personal beliefs and condescending remarks in a futile attempt to save face. The arguments presented by the (teachers) are clear, concise, and include factual and empirical supporting documentation. And that's what any type of decision should be based upon. Not gut feelings, or what other people in someone's own little world may also believe.

Rob lloyd Road said...

Here is my response to your answer:

You're a frustrated teacher who never was able to hold a job. Since you had a "C" average in high school and a 2.5 average in college you wanted to have summer off and work half days.

That's not my problem why you make $50k a year.

Anonymous said...

I was told that Matawan HS grads attend Brookdale to save money or get credits before transferring to a better college or university. In the fall of 2003 11.7% transferred out to a NJ Senior Public Institution or graduated within 2 years. That number was 28.8% after 3 years, so I stand by my statement that our children are not attending Brookdale for these reasons. I do believe that the teachers are failing our students and is the administration.

I also believe that a teacher earning $80,000 with 20 years of experience isn't terrible considering you are off all summer, pay little or nothing for health care, are guaranteed a job no matter how poorly you or your students perform and work less than 7 hours a day and no weekends. Get paid extra money to attend meetings, pensions, etc. I bet a lot of people would sign up for that! Teaching is a challenging job but lets be fair.

I am glad a teacher declared themself victorious in this debate.

Altlantic Avenue Steve said...

The main problem is not where the teachers go to school; but the ability of the administration to reward effective teachers and remove poor teachers from the classroom.

USA TODAY editorial


Another problem, is the number of teachers that are teaching subjects that they do not even have a degree minor in. We want to improve math, english and science; let's start by hiring people that actually have degrees in these subjects.

Attempts to reform the system are resisted by the union at all stages. There are teachers that should be paid twice what they get and teachers that should be fired.

Over the past 30 years the education system has been dumbed down. While it used to produce independent thinkers. The system now strives to produce obedient workers, who do not know how the financial system is rigged to keep them that way.

The philosophy at the core of most teacher training programs is group activity.It is much like the William Edwards Deming "TQM" concepts that worked in Japan. A well working group can improve manufacturing efficiency, but innovation can suffer.

If we look at our US history almost all great breakthroughs and paradigm shifts were produced by the persistence of an "INDIVIDUAL", many times in the face of substantial opposition. Think Edison, Hughes, Ford, Jobs and Gates etc. These are the kind of people we need our schools to produce.

Anonymous said...

Do you now see the validity of my statements? The responses are becoming more and more fueled by anger, sarcasm, envy, childlike behavior, and the last ditch efforts of a drowning man to chastise and berate people rather than challenge undisputed facts with supporting evidence. Again, we see another jealous opinion regarding grades, fringe benefits, and monetary compensation without fact or other supporting evidence. Let us sit back and watch as the hole on Lloyd Rd. is dug deeper.

In addition, one of the latest rants outlines one's personal belief of why someone enters the world of teaching (again, no supporting, empirical, research based evidence). Toward the end of the envious opinion a sentence reads as follows “I bet a lot of people would sign up for that!” This a typical elementary statement that deserves my stock answer. Sign up for it then! Get a Bachelor's Degree from an accredited institution of higher learning (such as the University of Phoenix, and no I did not attend that university), student teach, substitute teach, get all of your certifications, then pound the pavement and muddle through the politics and bureaucracies until you hopefully find yourself a position. Until then though, either keep your mouth shut or simply continue to speak without wisdom.

Anonymous said...

The previous poster was correct: The schools have been "dumbed down," but, not because of the teachers. I am a former teacher who decided to home school my children. Trust me when I tell you there are literally thousands of us "crazy" home schoolers in Monmouth County (I know of at least 50 homeschoolers who would have been enrolled in the MARSD if their parents had chosen otherwise... the BOE just doesn't know about them because the parents chose early on to keep their kids at home and they were never formally enrolled in the district). I chose to keep my kids at home for several reasons; the biggest of which is the No Child Left Behind Act.

Case in point: I have traveled the country with my children. We recently drove through 22 states and saw such beautiful monuments as Mt. Rushmore and the Arch at St. Louis. Everywhere we went, people asked me "why" my children weren't in school. I told them that my children were home schooled and that they were on an extended class trip. We were on a Mississippi River Boat Cruise and we "ran into" a group of public school children who were on their class trip. Two of their teachers told me that they "despised" the NCLB Act and congratulated me on my decision to teach at home. So, the NCLB Act has created problems all across America and our educational system has fallen into the abyss because of it. This isn't a problem for just NJ or the MARSD. THIS IS A NATION-WIDE ISSUE THAT WILL TAKE YEARS (IF NOT GENERATIONS)TO FIX.

The teachers, unfortunately, are forced to teach to the student who is having the most difficult time (i.e. the "slowest" student)due to the NCLB Act. Many teachers will tell you how this horrendous Federal act has caused an upset in their teaching methods.

The best of our students are moved into the G&T program, while the "average" child is left in the classroom with the "slowest" child. Now, this is not to say that the "slowest" student is the less-intelligent child (any teacher or parent will tell you that it is all in the approach of how you teach) however, when the "slowest" child is dragging down the "average" child, the average child becomes restricted by the slowest child's ability to grasp the material.

During the time of my one child's enrollment in the district, I felt that my son's teachers (and most of the others that I met) were dedicated individuals who truly cared about my child. HOWEVER, I was in the school almost everyday, volunteered for most, if not all, of the school activities, and rode their asses and questioned any practices that I did not agree with. I was extremely involved and I decided that the effort that I needed to put forth to ensure my that my children receive a quality education was best utilized teaching them myself.

My point here is this: The teachers' hands are tied by a well-meaning, but, extremely flawed Federal Act. The BOE is subjected to keep "bad" teachers due to tenure. Our kids are little only once in life. Their window of opportunity to learn is fleeting. My husband and I decided that we would not sit around and bitch and moan about what we thought was "wrong" with the school, but, instead, decided that time was against us and we were simply going to look after the best interests of our kids and take matters into our own hands. I applaud those of you who DO fight the system, for being compliant is the precursor to other downfalls, but, understand one thing: the MARSD is bound by law to follow the NCLB Act. Teaching methods may be tweaked. Teachers may be shuffled around. Other programs may be implemented (i.e. the early intervention program)to attempt to skew or head-off any problems this Act may have caused, but, when it comes down to it, this is all a big waste of time and a HUGE waste of taxpayer money. Unless this shuffle is done each and every year to adapt to the ever-evolving abilities of incoming students, it is just a smoke screen and an attempt to "fool" the parents into thinking that something is actually being done to help improve the learning condiditons. Don't be fooled. Be an active participant in your child's education and change what you don't like. However, please don't think that complaining on the Aberdeener will get your point across. Be proactive and understand that while you are complaining, your children are still not being taught properly. You may have great intentions, but, your kids will not receive much of an education if you wait for others to implement change. Time is against all of us because "school-age" is truly such a brief period of time. Pick and choose your battles, but realize that while you are at war, your kids may become casualties. Don't lose sight of the real issue. All of our children are more important than trying to "right" a system that has been broken for so long and is tied by funding to outside entities who don't even know who your kids are...or care to know, for that matter.

Anonymous said...

Sign up for those benfits. I bet a lot of construction workers, regular "joe's, would sign up for that. Maybe they don't want to be a teacher, you were the one who talked about teaching for 20 years and making 80,000. The only problem is you left out all the other goodies you get. Pensions, summer's off, 6 hour work days, health benefits, etc. You complain about the salary but leave out all the perks, work that 80,000 out over 12 months instead of 9 and what does that come out too? Holidays, sick days, etc.. Teachers don't have it that bad!

Anonymous said...

P.S. If you don't like it leave it, just as you tell others to go for it. That argument you have also works against you! Don't complain if that is what YOU signed up for. I bet when you decided to take that position you liked the idea of not working all summer and putting in a few years and having job security for life. That is a fact, I do know and it can all be detailed in teacher contracts, which are easily found on line. I do respect the job you do and it is not for everyone but some of these other posts are great, especially the home school teacher and the article from the USA Today. We all just want what is best for our children. I would be willing to pay teachers more if there was a reward for the good one's and we could cut the dead wood, just like everyone else must deal with in their jobs - you don't perform-GOODBYE! We don't have tenure.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Lloyd Roader

Anonymous said...

I am the commenter who suggested that the district should consider ending our long standing tradition of hiring alumni. I understand that there is a benefit in promoting community and school spirit. But it just makes sense to me that, since the schools are all performing so below average, that we should examine all remedies. God knows, I do not want to hurt anybody's feelings or take away anyone's way of earning a living. But, maybe, in the future, if we hire teachers who have been educated in successful districts, we may begin to have a successful district too.

Anonymous said...

Teachers that post on this blog are the biggest cowards and whiners.

You teach kids all day I guess you learn to cry like one!

Grow UP!!

Why did you become a teacher in the first place? Was it because you couldn't get a job any where else or you did it for the money?

You have it so easy, I would just shut my mouth, collect my paycheck, use my benefits, milk the system, enjoy the summer and pray that I make it to retirement.

Anonymous said...

To the annoymous poster who seems to defend everything this school districts does, and also defends Rutgers as the be all and end all, if Rutgers accepts it than it is fine. Rutgers wants to pay thier football coach $2.25 million annually, where are their priorities? Is it educational excellence or football? Rutgers hasn't had the name it once had for many years!

Aberdeener said...

Just a reminder -
This site is intended to be an arena for ideas, not American Gladiator.

Let's try to keep it civil and not make it personal. We're here to argue the best course of action, nothing else.

I welcome the verbal swordplay but not the gratuitous insults.

Jim O section said...

Then go to another blog!

Remember we are NOT IN YOUR CLASSROOM and if you don't like the insults don't read or answer back.

It seams as if you are one of those control freak teachers that loves the power you have over your students because outside of school grounds you have none!

Aberdeener said...

I'm fascinated by the discussion about whether we're better served by teachers who live in our community.

Undoubtedly, it's beautiful to behold a neighbor who has chosen to dedicate his life to the service of our community. Teachers who live here are likely more dedicated to our children and our community. However, on balance, I think we're better served by teachers who come from other communities.

My reasons are as follows:
1) The teachers union derives its power from its ability to organize voting drives. The more teachers who live locally, the more powerful the union becomes, and the less likely we will ever see the school district make our children its first priority.
2) The school board has a no nepotism policy to prevent board members from acting on issues where there's a conflict of interest. Voting on contracts, work issues, and disciplinary actions that involve neighbors, friends, and constituents, creates similar conflicts of interest.
3) Board members who wish to remain board members have a strong incentive to serve the interests of local teachers since they are more likely to vote and campaign on election day.
4) A teacher who also attended our school district is both more familiar and comfortable in the school's environment, the faculty and staff, and the district's expectations. That same teacher is less likely to embrace or be an agent of change.

I admire those people who choose to become teachers in our district. However, given our district's shortcomings, I think we are better served by teachers who come from elsewhere.

Anonymous said...

A few points-

there is so much hatred on here toward teachers. Not one supposed teacher on here came on complaining about time or money - they were defending themselves from attacks.

Is tenure wrong? Not totally because for those of you in the business world- what would stop a district who is trying to save $$ from firing all of the teachers at the top of the guide ? Is that right?

To be fair - tenure can hide the inadequate ones

The original post was about master's degrees..... on line ...

some teachers defended themselves as anyone else would -

Aberdeener - I REALLY don't think that 10 teachers or so who went to this school and now teach in the district will have huge effects on the policy making of the BOE - and if anyone knew the homegrown teachers, they would know they would do what is best for this district - and that could mean CHANGE as you spoke of -if that is what is best.

This blog is worth while - and I only post if the anonymous thing is allowed, but we will have to read those who want there agendas which will be negative, at times, no matter what. And this is America, so that is OK too.

Once again, defending an attack - AND NOT WANTING A PAT ON THE BACK -I would like to shed some light on some of the falacies:
1. It is a 10 month job
2. It is more than 6 hours a day
3. If you have 125 students - that is 125 personalities, intellects, learning styles, graded worksheets, graded quizzes, graded tests, and computed grades at an of end each quarter.

4. There is work brought home nightly
5. Daily preparation for each new lesson

It is not easy as one of the posters made it out to be and that is all I am clarifying - not asking for any fanfare.

Also, if any of these people had really met many of the teachers in this district, or ANY system in any state, many of them "do it" because of their love of teaching and communicating with the youth, not for paid holidays.

Anonymous said...

I should have said THIER - not there

I don't want to give the HATERS ammo.....

Aberdeener said...

You are correct in that I don't know how many teachers are local so it may not be an issue. I never researched the matter but my understanding was that a significant number of local residents worked in some capacity for the school district.

Regarding the original post, my concern is that the system appears to be driving teachers to the cheapest and easiest masters degrees that they can find. Marygrove's online program was denied professional accreditation in contrast to Seton Hall's accredited online program.

Another point - the work year is 187 days, not including vacation and sick time. That's equivalent to a 9-month position even if teachers don't get a single 3-month break.

As for tenure, long-time workers in the private sector seem to survive without tenure's protection. Why would anyone think we'd dump our best teachers to save a few dollars? And why should we pay based upon seniority rather than performance?

Anonymous said...

Performance should be expected, yes. But you know and I know about agendas. Let us say a teacher in some town, pisses off the wrong people because their kid did not earn a 93 or did not make the soccer team - without tenure - they are in troulbe if the parent has the ear of a BOE member.

You did numerous stories and comments about the short comings of our BOE last election - some right and others quetionable. WHo is to say? But do you see where I am coming from?

Agendas are everywhere. Read some of the 71 post before mine - you don't see sour grapes? There are flaws with tenure, agreed - but they do have used. I am just asking readers to be fair.

And please, think about it. Without tenure, some districts would cut the highest paying to save money - bottom line.

The degrees discussed are allowed by many districts around here - so do not be mad at teachers for what is accepted practice. For those with tunnel vision, there is a world outside of Aberdeen who do what we do and worse. I just don't think piling it on teachers or grouping all of them is the most constructive thing to be done with this blog.... that is all

mat. ave. blake said...

Heck,

If you want to discuss money and savings - forget the teachers as much - at least they are in the trenches so to speak -

Crunch these numbers - Aberdeener, please look into what these people cost us -

super
asst. super
dir. of testing
directors of accountability? (there are few)

lawyer
accountant
consultants
other Crest Way big wigs

See how those people add up in our 60+ million dollar budget.... it is all public record

Then cross reference that total with what Hazlet, Red Bank, Holmdel, Rumson, and Ocean to see how we add up... they are schools of our size.

Also, I am not a big Corzine fan, but, he did have an idea for combining districts to save TAXPAYER MONEY. Imagine Mat. - Abrdn - Keyport - Union Beach - and Hazlet as one district that share an administration and super and BOE. You would have to add a few more people to the list above b/c of more schools and students but we would divide the total cost by 5 towns rather than one --- it works in the Midwest and Southwest.

Imagine the savings...... is there a story there Aberdeener?

Anonymous said...

I heard that Corzine idea too..... that would put an end to a lot of useless spending and agendas......

and I would also like to see those numbers and comparisons Blake spoke of........

Aberdeener said...

I have to look for it but I was once shown an article that claims districts our size are the most efficient. Smaller districts don't have economies of scale. Larger districts embark upon empire building.

Regarding administrative bloat, I think its outrageous that more administration officials don't share secretaries. Dr. O'Malley makes do without a secretary yet have a look at the Marsd directory. The district has nearly 40 secretaries.

You're right. If we cut that number in half and removed some of the other administrative bloat, we could save close to $1.5 million a year.

If the superintendent can manage without a secretary, surely others can do without one as well.

Anonymous said...

Just to touch on the teacher salaries. Teachers work 187 days a year, the rest of us 261 minus the 7 holidays or so. A middle school teachers work 6 hors and 45 minutes a day, HS 7 hours and 3 minutes, I work at least 8 everyday. Teachers are paid $10 for a 15 minute meeting, $20 for a 30 minute meeting and $30 for a 45 minute meeting, you guessed it, what, it is part of my job attend meetings. Teachers get 10 sick days, which if not used can be carried over and 2 personal days, which also can be carried over. A teacher inthe school district for 15 years with a masters makes about $80,000 a year. Not bad.
I do respect teachers but there was some whinning from you guys.

P O'd in Matawan said...

As far as BLOAT start with the windbag that is Joel Glastein.

Everything from there on is gravy. He ruined this district as well as morale amongst teachers and staff.

By the way Joel I am not happy with you over Mr. Watson and some other BS you pulled. September is coming Joel. Look for me.

But you know that Joel. Don't you?

Anonymous said...

187 days x 7 hours = 1309 hours

If your salary is $80,000/yr you are earning about $61/hr, not bad.

Plus a pension. Medical, I pay for mine, how about you.

Every teacher I have say how great the job is, why do you deny how cushy your jobs are.

The kindergarten teachers are earning 80,000 a year.

Anonymous said...

Add to the $80,000 extra income for every teacher that coaches, teachers that tutor, teachers that teach summer school,teachers that attend school functions as chaperones, teachers that attend graduation ceremonies, etc, etc. It all adds up $$$! A teacher can easily make up to 6 figures, and no worry of ever losing their job if they don't perform. (after 3 years and 1 day- tenure) What happened to a teacher being availiable after school to help a student understand the work? Yes, I know there is after school tutoring, but that is with a different teacher. Isn't your child's teacher the one who should be responsible to teach your child, not another teacher. That just means their teacher isn't good at teaching. On several occasions I wanted to meet with my child's teachers after school, but they weren't availiable because they coached. Teachers are not the only problem with this district, but they are part of it. The priority is never on the student.

Then we have a BOE, with a majority in control that bends over backwards, to make teachers, and every other school employee(their neighbors and friends) happy. They know teachers and school employees are the majority of the voting public who re-elect them to the board, and they want to maintain control. (What is in it for them? Someone please tell me, they must be getting something.)

We know the teachers union is going to fight for the teachers, that's their role, and they do it well. But the BOE should be fighting for the students, ALL the students, not just their own.
Our children are never going to get a quality education as long as those who are elected to fight for our students are more concerned with the teachers, than the students. Yes, teachers have the right to defend themselves, and have unions fight for them. And our children have the right to have our BOE fight for them! But bad teachers need to be removed, good teachers need to be rewarded, and NO teacher should ever have to worry about pissing off any parent (whose kid didn't score a 93 etc) that has the ear of a BOE member, as one poster stated.
Good teachers shouldn't have to worry about being removed to save a little money, and bad teachers should have to worry.
The rest of us work under these rules, why shouldn't teachers.

mrsb said...

I am a supporter of the teachers for the most part, but I have to say that I am not a big supporter of tenure.

Yes, it's true, if you give a kid a bad grade, and his parent has the ear of the BOE, maybe that can be detrimental to your job security.

But if you work at a business, and you someone who has the ear of the boss thinks you gave them bad service, is that any different?

No one else really has that level of job security just because they've been in a job for a certain amount of time (not even based on job performance).

I'd rather see contracts for certain amounts of time than just give away tenure. How about a teacher's contract for 3 years, pending performance reviews? Surely the good teachers will be hired over and over again?

Anonymous said...

Yes, three year contracts for teachers is a wonderful idea, with a review before each rehiring. That is when raises should be given also, if merited. But try to get that from the unions.

Anonymous said...

??? a recent post

Teachers work 187 days a year, the rest of us 261 minus the 7 holidays or so. A middle school teachers work 6 hors and 45 minutes a day, HS 7 hours and 3 minutes, I work at least 8 everyday. Teachers are paid $10 for a 15 minute meeting, $20 for a 30 minute meeting and $30 for a 45 minute meeting, you guessed it, what, it is part of my job attend meetings. Teachers get 10 sick days, which if not used can be carried over and 2 personal days, which also can be carried over. A teacher inthe school district for 15 years with a masters makes about $80,000 a year. Not bad.

???

I cut and pasted this crap. Once again, you attack someone at least have the facts correct and I am sure this will be refuted by another agenda.

Facts - The teacher day is much longer than what was written - PLUS work taken home to grade and prepare for the next lesson- all in all over 8 hours total

I have never heard of this pay per minute meeting stuff you wrote of- if its true- I am owed a fortune = joke. Teachers have faculty meetings, parent meetings, parent phone conferences, administrative meetings, department meetings, Back to school night, and 3 rounds of Day and Night appointment conferences- All unpaid and UNDERSTOOD as part of this job. No idea what the poster was speaking of.

And I beleive the poster that was responded to- did say repeatedly they asked for no fanfare.

There is tutoring for classroom concepts = for any student to attend numerous times per week. I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF ANY OTHER TYPE OF TEACHER EVER deny a student after class or school help. Most anything contrary is a FLAT OUT LIE.

And yes teachers who stay for extras - clubs, activities, chaperones, and sports are paid. Is that not normal in the real world?? A coach or band director or chorus teacher or whatever is paid a stipend for the extra time. If you do your twisted math - and say a teacher gets to the high school at 7am and teaches then has a game or club event until 9pm - that is 14 hours. How would that look in the business world? Time and a half - it is not the case here, as people are paid a flat stipend.

How dare you attack people who are helping the youth of our community after school? Be a smarty pants and add up all of hours of an advisor or coach and divide into $$ and it would come out to 7 or 8 bux an hour - at best.

LET ME REPEAT- NO PAT ON THE BACK ASKED FOR - JUST REPLYING TO FALSE INFO......

This whole thing is really getting out of hand.......

Anonymous said...

To the above poster, here is the link of your contract.

http://www.meetings-center.com/aberdeen/teachercontract07.pdf from the Aberdeener's older post!!

Maybe you should read your own contract. If you can't read your own contract it's not my fault!

187 days! read the link.

Anonymous said...

It does seem to state that info in this contract. Maybe you should read it over more carefully.

Anonymous said...

I can read, thank you.

Once again, you are not there, you don't know- as I do not know the workings of your job.

It states that the teacher is expected to attend up to 30 hours of meetings without compensation. I wrote about those meetings in the post. This payment of money is when time which is allowed in the work day for the teacher is taken up by an important unexpected meeting that cannot wait. The employee has that option of money or comp time after a certain point. I have only seen comp time taken. Same as if you work at Toys R US and they take your lunch or break time and they either pay you or give you time back. What is so hard to see here?

I was replying to the original post which said that ALL meetings and whatever were paid for and compensated- not true. I believe the quote was "attending meetings is part of my job". So are all of the meetings I listed.

And it is 187 days, OK. As it is in almost every American school district. And I listed a few of the times when people who do extras who are here more than that- and there is compensation- a stipend. Coaches, band, dance team, play and musical, and a few others are there much more than the 187.

Not complaining - just fixing untruths.

I don't even live in this town, but wow thank god I don't. I would be afraid to go to the grocery store for fear of people seeing what type of food I eat and post it on here- "teachers should not eat Chips Ahoy. That is why our students like snack food." or see how much I pay for meat and chicken and post it as a accusation stealing or something. Of course, exagerration.

I will agree this is really getting out of hand and has NOTHING to do with the origin of this first post.

Mat. Ave. Blake said...

Any word on those numbers Mr. Aberdeener?

And I must admit, some of this IS getting out of hand and off topic.

The next post about the bank loan and when it was taken and the interest is much more important than who gets reimbursed for lunch time lost.... which, to be honest, is common practice where I work in the city - you lose time owed to you - you get repaid or comp. time on a Friday.... sorry......

Anonymous said...

If I am reading this teachers contract right the union president gets full pay and only teaches 3 periods a day. Thats not right. Pay teachers to teach.

Anonymous said...

Read the contract, you teachers have it pretty good. I saw that you were trying to end the UNTRUTH's, after looking at the contract everything that poster said was there, you were called out and wrong! I would agree it is getting off the topic.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I understnd why some teachers feel they must defend their positions, salary or benefits. I did not choose to be an educator but can happily state that so far I am pleased with the ones that did choose that profession. Mt chidren have recieved an outstanding education in our schools, and I for one am thankful for all the hard work they do. There are some folks that will never appreciate what they do-they only can see their tax dollars being spent on something they have little respect for.

And to the blogger that critized Mr. Glastein- He does not make the recommendation to hire or not rehire-that is the role of the superintendent.
And from what I understand both the current and the past proncipal of the high school recommended that he not be rehired.

Anonymous said...

I am a graduate of the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District, and an educator. I was fortunate enough to have parents who could afford to send me away to college. Some of my friends who were in my honors and AP classes didn't have that luxury and therefore went to Brookdale. That doesn't make them less of an educated student. Many of them went to Brookdale, graduated and transferred to Rutgers, Monmouth or Kean. Today they are nurses, teachers and out in the business world. Why is Brookdale being bashed?
As for online master's degrees, have you seen the work that has to be completed? I have, I did it, and I am a better teacher for it! Some teachers go back to these online courses YEARS after graduating college. Education is changing and teachers are doing what they can to keep up with the changing times. NCLB, alone, has altered education and if you don't realize that, then you had better realize it FAST! These online courses are work, and work that teachers can relate and incorporate into their classrooms.

Aberdeener said...

"As for online master's degrees, have you seen the work that has to be completed? I have, I did it, and I am a better teacher for it!"

I've not seen any data that suggests teachers become better at teaching after they've received a masters degree through an online program.

I'm not challenging your statement but can you share some data that supports your position that these online programs ultimately help our students?