Veteran fourth-grade teacher Ellie Rubenstein decided after 15 years in the classroom she’d had enough with the all-encompassing focus on standardized testing and administrators who only cared about hitting the right numbers on the tests.
So she quit. On YouTube.
In the 10-minute video, which had been viewed more than 80,000 times as of Thursday evening, Rubenstein calmly recalls her initial excitement at the beginning of her career, and the joy she took in helping shape young students’ love of learning.
But those early years have given way to a world where testing is king, and teachers should never, ever deviate from the written plans devised by administrators.
“Raising students’ test scores on standardized tests is now the only goal, and in order to achieve it, the creativity, flexibility, and spontaneity that create authentic learning environments have been eliminated,” Rubenstein says in the video.
The Chicago Tribune reports that long-simmering tensions in the North Shore School District 112 outside Chicago have prompted a meeting with district administrators Thursday night.
“I have to get out before my sense of self and self-worth are completely obliterated,” Rubenstein said in the video. “Sadly, there are many others who feel as I do.”
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