Monday, September 18, 2006

Shake Ups All-around

The past two weeks have brought about a lot that affects the Detroit metro area. First it was the school strike and then the Ford Motor Company. Ford announced it was going to eliminate 14,000 salaried jobs. All I could think of was, here we go again.

The teacher strike put teachers against administration and parents. Now the Ford announcement has residents and other businesses fighting for survival. The southeast section of the state of Michigan is hanging by a thin thread already. The last thing they need is another battle to fight in the world of survival. Yet, that is the new train of thought. What do we do now, is the question?

The announcement now has lent an open forum to a retiring senior executive with Ford. Annie Stevens, who leaves the company October 1, says it was too little, too late. She said the company is top heavy and takes too long to resolve problems. Hello, didn’t you notice this back in the eighties and nineties? Apparently not. Every company in existence then starting cutting back during that time.

If that isn’t enough, the battle for governorship between Granholm and DeVos is scaring the bee heaves out of residents also. Do I go with DeVos and worry about more jobs leaving teh state or do I stay with Granholm and look forward to more jobs coming to Michigan? Lordy, lordy, too much on the plate. I know sometimes more than one drastic change at the same time is more than most people can think about. Will these job related issues affect the upcoming election? Probably. Many people usually lean toward the candidate they feel will help them survive.

Survival of the fittest is guiding the populace now. The loss of a job makes people think what else is coming in the near and far future. Do I do this or do I do that? Decisions, decisions, decisions. Why now, is what hovers around people as their plans of yesterday no longer apply. Sadly, it is all out of their control. They have to accept that the only thing they can control, is themselves. To constantly worry about the doings of businesses, schools, or the government is ludicrous. One can only do what is necessary as time allows.

Remember the very old saying, when handed lemons, make lemonade? Well, it sounds like it would definitely be a plan of action now.

Starting tomorrow for more of my opinions on the current news go to www

Monday, September 11, 2006

An Education Lesson

This morning I woke up with so much on my mind. I had no idea what I would write about. Especially, since I had not written my blog last week. Finances, work, writing, reading, housework, time off, school and the teacher’s strike were all on my mind. The teacher strike going on here in Detroit, Michigan, is serious business. Therefore, I was left with only one thing to write about, again. Education.

The strike is of utmost importance to me because I am now in school for my masters’ in education. I plan to teach in the near future. It’s not that I haven’t taught in the past. I was once a substitute teacher. Having been in the profession for two years a while ago, I personally saw what was needed in the educational system. With my own eyes, I saw exhaustion, fear and complaisance. I felt the school system needed help. Help from those like myself, willing to still believe in the hope that things could change. So I went back to school.

As I watch the strike going on, I find that I understand the reasons for the battle. On the other side, I worry about the children. They cannot afford to miss any days of school. The Detroit school system has for a long time had the reputation of not educating the children of the city. It has been said they are not at the literacy levels they should be. Sadly, some of this may be true. When I substituted for regular teachers, I witnessed what the children could and could not do. Mind you, I taught in the middle and high schools. Some of the children I encountered were not able to perform the way I thought they should, nor the way the system felt they should.

This is what inspired me to offer my help as a teacher of the future. I wanted to be a part of the changes that were inevitable for there would have to be changes made. The system as it is, does not work anymore. Many children of today were not being prepared for tomorrow. If change did not come, they would not survive. I felt I had to be in the future, as a teacher, to help institute the changes.

Here I go back to the strike. As a life long union member, I must stand by the teacher strike. For I believe in the power of the masses and unity. But I do worry if the children should be the scape goats. As the administration and the union representatives fight it out, will this be an educational lesson for the children or just more days off from school? I hope that the children see this as a civics class. Remembering the one I had in the past was a stepping stone in the lesson I was taught on being part of the solutions and not part of the problems.