As I watched the video above, two thoughts immediately popped into my head:
1. Why do teachers’ unions claim they deserve more pay and endless benefits when this is the result of their “hard work” in the classroom?
2. I honestly can’t remember anyone this dumb in my Catholic high school back in Ohio when I was going to school in the mid-90s.
I do admit there’s a caveat to #2 in that there was a girl in my grade school — when I was in third or fourth grade — who could have starred in this video. Cleveland sits on America’s “North Coast” (according to the Ohio tourism board at least), on the shores of Lake Erie. You know, one of the Great Lakes (whose mnemonic device was HOMES). This girl must have been at home, sick in bed, on the day in first grade when we learned this because she ultimately revealed she thought that body of water just north of the city was the ocean. When pressed by the teacher to specify which ocean, the girl was surprised there was more than one, “since they were all connected”. Finally, she mumbled “Indian Ocean”, in an Amy Sedaris as Jerri Blank sort of way. I’m sure that’s because she was remotely aware that “Indiana” or “India-something” was nearby and she ran with that. The nun at the chalk board got so red in the face hearing this I thought she was going to start screaming and slapping rulers across the tables — but instead she serenely floated out into the hallway, closing the oak and etched-glass door behind her, and LAUGHED AND LAUGHED AND LAUGHED.
But, I don’t think even the Indian-Ocean-Borders-Ohio-Girl would have flubbed as many basic questions as these public high school students did.
I can just hear the teachers’ union reps consoling the kids who thought there were 51 stars on the American flag (you know, for all 51 states): “It’s okay Brendan, you can try again. We are all winners here. There are no right or wrong answers. You said there were 51 stars, but if you can think up an extra 6 stars you too can be president some day”.
At least this wasn’t filmed in the Chicago Public School system — where instead of just not answering the questions correctly the film crew would have been beaten senseless and their camera and microphone would have been stolen…while, of course, all the teachers were on some sort of union-mandated “break”.
© 2012, Kevin DuJan. All rights reserved.
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