Teacher facilitator of learning
Before we jump into this discussion, we need to make clear the meaning of words teacher and facilitator. It is very important to this discussion because while some of you believe the two words mean the same; they are not. The difference in the two words determines thee learning outcomes in our public schools today.
1. The definition of Teacher: Origin 1200 AD (teacher) – A person’s whose occupation is educating/teaching others. A person whose occupation is to instruct.
2. The definition of Facilitator: Origin 1799 AD (Facilitator) – one that helps to bring about an outcome (as learning, productivity, or communication) by providing indirect or unobtrusive assistance, guidance, or supervision (the workshop’s facilitator kept discussion flowing smoothly)
What are the differences between teachers from 1965 – 1999 and teachers between 2000 and 2015? Teachers or facilitators? State controlled Unit of instruction or is the teacher allowed to set the syllabus? Can the teacher select the curriculum and teach what she wants to teach or is it mandatory for the teacher to teach to the state curriculum?
There are several opinions of what it means for our schools to have our teachers move from being the traditional teacher to the outcome learning facilitator. In 2009, Timothy Clapper wrote a paper entitled: “Moving away from teaching and becoming a facilitator of learning more!” (Click here to read it and return here)
Performance-based education a.k.a. Outcome-based education implements the desired education set by the State’s Education Agency. Teachers are required to make sure the State Education Agency’s education goals are implemented thus ensuring the outcome is reached. The teacher is therefore evaluated based on his or her ability to perform the tasks as outlined for implementing the outcome-based assignment. When outcome-based education was being piloted in ‘certain’ zip codes, Phyllis Schlafly, wrote in her May-1993 Report: “What’s wrong with outcome-based education!” (Click here to read it and return here)
Do you know if your child’s teacher is able to write and implement his/her own syllabus for a curriculum he/she determines is best for his/her class? Or, is your child’s teacher required to facilitate units of learning according to a syllabus and curriculum approved and given to him/her by the State Education Agency? When you understand this process, you will understand your child’s frustration in learning. You will understand your child’s teacher’s frustration with the process. You will understand why you have been confused with those strange feelings you’ve had that something is amidst at your child’s school. Remember this…your child does not have a point of reference. What was English or Language Arts is not being taught the same as it was taught when you were in school in the 70’s.