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Speak Your Mind for Common Good

Common Good tries to target and reform overly rule-bound areas of law. Last year, the organization’s education section did a widely-circulated graphic showing what’s involved in hiring a teacher. Now it is asking for examples of ridiculous schools rules for a new Top Ten list. Nothing wrong with this, except that in the last round there was too much attacking teacher contracts and not enough ridicule of school bureaucracies. So send in an example from Kleinberg, or your RIS, LIS, ROC etc. There have been some great ones in this blog’s contract comments. Consider sending them to Common Good. And please copy Edwize in comments section to this post.
They write (and use the email address at the end):
No sunscreen on campus? No field trips? Can’t put your arm around a crying child? As a follow-up to the popular feature, “Top Ten New School Rules,” Common Good would like to hear from you. They are compiling a second list of nonsensical or burdensome rules — this time from educators and parents around the country. Tell them about the rules and policies in your school that are making it more difficult for educators to teach and students to learn. They will publish the best responses in an upcoming Common Good feature. Please e-mail your entries to rules@cgood.org.



  • 1 shouldhavegonetomeds
    · Oct 25, 2005 at 12:23 am

    I took children to see “Fiddler on the Roof” when I was a student teacher 34 school years ago. My cooperating/sponsering teacher was a highly structured, experienced Irish Dominican nun. She lavished praise on me for taking the children to the play. The principal sent her regards for the trip and was glad the inner-city childern got a chance to see a play.

    This year I spoke to my principal about taking students to “Fiddler on the Roor”. He is an experienced Jewish man. He greatly discouraged me, noting all the trouble you could get into for taking children out.

    Welcome to education 2005

  • 2 Maisie
    · Oct 25, 2005 at 2:43 pm

    Thanks for the example. I really wonder if I’d send my children to the public schools again if they were starting now.
    You emailed it to Common Good, I hope.

  • 3 shouldhavegonetomeds
    · Oct 25, 2005 at 5:57 pm


    Thanks for the compliment. The story is totally true. The tickets back in 1972 were $2.50 each from TDF. I don’t know how to post on the other site, feel free to do it for me, if that is possible.


  • 4 northbrooklyn
    · Oct 25, 2005 at 8:12 pm

    OOH! What delicious fun… the real world of work and the silly rules those who rule us come up with-so here are my latest top ten for your consideration:
    *special class during 6th period pd required face to face discussion with 9 separate individuals,
    *teachers asked to sign out when they go to lunch just in case something happens-like a fire-so that the firefighters don’t have to travel to the top floors to check for any missing teachers [even though they are required to do so]
    but the teachers are not required to sign back in,
    *teachers who are organizing anything [wkshop, trips, etc.] have to have separate meetings with the principal and assistant principal because they hate one another and refuse to speak to one another or be in the same room,
    *teachers choice must be used to buy pencils,
    *holding a class in the hall until they are settled down enough to be led to the school yard for dismissal could be corporal punishment[as defined by the principal],
    *permission slips from parents to walk a class across the street are required,
    *permission to go to a botanical garden to pick up plants for class during one of the clerical days in June was give with the warning to be very careful to not get in a accident lest the doe decided that the teacher was not covered ‘medically’,
    *paras required to do lunch duty because they might take the last period to travel to class for their b.a.
    *everyone required to attend Monday pd even if they are non-teaching personnel,
    *speech teachers doing coverages.

  • 5 no_slappz
    · Oct 28, 2005 at 9:09 pm

    Teacher Certification. Full certification requires teachers to have taken foreign language classes in college. For what reason are math teachers required to have studied foreign language in college? Without foreign language credits, a teacher cannot receive full certification. Yet requiring math teachers to have studied a foreign language in college eliminates most engineers from considering a career change to teaching. Engineers are generally not required to study foreign language in their B.S. degree programs. They have too much math and engineering to cover. There’s no time for studying non-technical subjects. Thus, the Department of Education has cut itself off from a huge supply of potential math and science teachers for a very silly reason.

  • 6 firefly
    · Oct 30, 2005 at 8:12 pm

    My new favorite rule is that you can not give a child a failing grade of less than 55 and you must give a 55 if the student has attended your class at least more than once.

    Therefore, the student who has actually attended your class twice gets a 55 as does the students who comes half the time and does absolutely nothing except chat with his friends as does the student who had actually done some work, tried for the most part, but just didn’t make the grade.

    Hmmm..sounds “fair” right?

    I’m sure that next semester we’ll be instructed that we are not allowed to fail anyone because remember…you can not fail a child for not attending your class!

  • 7 firefly
    · Oct 30, 2005 at 8:14 pm


    As you all know…you can not fail a student for not coming to class.

    Just like, we can not be fired for not coming to work, right?