The Sad State Of Our Educational System

studentsThere have been many more clueless professors coming in as of late for “special help.” Recently I discovered that Goliath is a certified math teacher. Heaven help us all for Goliath can barely form coherent sentences let alone use a sophisticated piece of technology like a computer. He knows the basics now that I am teaching him… But this is going very slowly as he cannot retain information to save his life. When he first came in I actually thought that we had ourselves a new homeless guy because his appearance is disheveled at best and he is at least as odoriferous.

He constantly refers to his yahoo email account and every independent piece of mail and attachment within as his “page” which is amusing and annoying at the same time. Goliath has come a long way though and is sure to be teaching the children of America math very soon.

In other news, The Clueless Professor has frayed every last nerve that the Reference Staff had left. She uses no fewer than four different flash drives for quintuple redundant backups of her no fewer than 20 resumes and countless cover letters then forgets where she put everything and blames our computers. Aside from her constantly asking the staff for help and then telling us that we’re mistaken or that there is a better way to go about doing whatever it is that she’s asking about, she says things like, “I don’t know why this isn’t working today? It worked here on Tuesday.” Possibly her most grating quality is that she can’t seen to grasp the concept of the PDF which is primarily a read only format that is used to preserve document formatting. Sure, PDFs can be set to accept editing but the vast majority aren’t. So despite our best efforts to show her how she can find the security settings where what is allowed is clearly stated she insists that the other day she was able to type within the PDF, or at another library she was able to type within the PDF, and therefore it must be our computers and not any restrictions placed on the PDF’s themselves. Oy! Around and around we go, and soon this woman will be teaching America’s college students, or maybe not as she told me that her last academic gig was in Guatemala.

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Our Intern thinks that this woman is just flat-out insane and isn’t a teacher at all and just applies to every college from Hawaii to Haiti. This would probably be the best case scenario as it would keep her away from teaching anything. Sadly, I fear that she and Goliath just represents a growing trend that underscored the sad state of our educational system.

I fear this because they aren’t the only ones. We have another guy who is better with technology but I have my doubts about his ability to effectively communicate ideas to students, and then there is the original Clueless Professor who still comes in from time to time. Clearly there are good teachers out there and every profession has its bindlestiffs and stumblebums but it’s alarming to think that the people I profiled here are either teaching America’s children or will very soon be doing so. It is imperative that our system be overhauled for the 21st Century or America is only going to fall further behind Asia and the rest of the world. We need to act swiftly or we’re not going to be able to keep up in the years to come.

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~ by Woeful on October 30, 2009.

10 Responses to “The Sad State Of Our Educational System”

  1. “I am, as I’ve said, merely competent. But in an age of incompetence, that makes me extraordinary.” –Billy Joel

    I see you finally wrote the post. My gosh, this is so reminiscent of my workplace. You sure you did not sneak in here when no one was looking? You have my condolences.

  2. Great post, Sarah! We get our share of those too. Bindlestiffs and stumblebums…priceless!! Clearly you are far more educated than I 😉

  3. Sarah?

  4. So Sorry!! I follow too many of you guys & was thinking of Sarah Houghton-Jan, The Librarian in Black. I know, I know….just like a man to say the wrong name at the wrong time 😉

  5. The funny thing is that’s exactly who I first though of when I read your comment. This really is a small community.

  6. Great minds think alike?

  7. We tried to help a woman apply to be a substitute teacher for a neighboring school district. The application, of course, is online. She spent the majority of 3 days in the library with a lot of assistance from staff and whichever other patrons were kind enough to offer help (before realizing their mistake and sneaking away), but she never finished her application. I know it’s my job to provide assistance, but I have a hard time helping someone who, when told “just click on the ‘add’ link to add another reference,” replies with “what’s a link?”…and she’s applying to be a teacher. 😦

    On the positive side, we’re seeing a lot more kids actually doing homework on our computers.

  8. I heard she work @ SCSU in the late 80’s and early 90’s and that would explain alot

  9. It’s all very disconcerting.

  10. Your job sounds more and more like mine

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