Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Hard to get Dooced when you quit:

I have three weeks left in my summer teaching gig. I was going to continue into the fall with them, teaching just one night class a week, but they made the odd decision of lowering all adjuncts’ wages. When I factored in the round trip from H. in gas and the time spent in preparation, grading and commuting, their offer worked out to four something an hour. I went to my boss and politely told her that I could make more working at McDonalds and that I would not be returning.

I like the material I teach and the kids are the grown up versions of the at risk kids I’ve been teaching on the high school level. I feel committed to the students, but it doesn’t make sense for me to continue to prostitute myself for what has essentially become an educational puppy mill.

The school has simultaneously dropped admission standards and raised class expectations/difficulty. The higher expectations are in line with accreditation standards so that the students can get federal student loans. The school can thus enroll more students who couldn’t otherwise afford to go to school, and then they can bill them for each attempt at taking the general education classes for which they have not been prepared by previous educational experience. Hypothetically in this situation a basic writer could run up thirty thousand in loans over multiple semesters trying to pass a single composition class.

It’s ironic that one of the classes I teach for them is Ethics.


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