So Many Things...
This morning I cannot decide what to write about... A
beloved transgender student--accepted by her parents as she transitioned from Eric to Hope? My sadness at a beautiful life
lost? My confusion? Why, with her parents' support, would she choose to end her life now? Just months from
high school graduation? Accepted by thirteen colleges? Why? There had to be other issues at play. Depression?
Anxiety? Parents' divorce?
Or might I write about my Florida
International University freshman--my daughter--and her obtuse text: "I'm alive."? I'd not yet heard of the pedestrian
bridge collapse. Might I write of the inner drop at the knowledge that she often drives that very road? That it all
feels so random? That waiting at a traffic light was a death sentence for six? Might I write of the horror of more anguished
waiting? For there are six grieving families connected to six bodies still covered in Tamiami Trail rubble...
Or shall I write today of the silliness of Florida's "Best and Brightest"?
I am not one of the best and brightest. Having earned an effective instead of a highly effective evaluation this
year, I am one of the "Kinda Good and Sorta Lackluster" sigh heaving educators who receive $800 instead of $1,200.
Ah, now that strikes the "Kym (Kim with attitude) Kord". Although
I received a perfect evaluation by my school principal for the work I do at my school, I did not receive enough points
from my evaluated children's test scores to achieve highly effective status. That might have been a blow to my fragile
ego if this counselor's "core and non-core" evaluation weren't so clearly and immorally stupid.
Did I just write stupid? Why, I hardly ever choose that word! I
most often choose synonyms like foolish. Naive. But a "core and non-core" counselor evaluation on 23
FSA math scores is just plain (more synonyms) imbecilic and ignorant. Just plain corrupt to keep that money outta this
hardworking gal's pockets! Why, I'd have paid to have my roof pressure washed! Now, Florida legislature, I'll
have to live with the mold a while longer.
Lordy, I think that's funny! I might as well hold you accountable for my roof tiles blackened edges! Why not?
You hold me accountable for 23 math scores...
work as a school counselor includes: organizing school wide events such as "Starts With Hello"; "No One Eats
Alone" and "No Place For Hate". I present in classrooms and meet with groups of children. I work hard at preventing
bullying. I am an Anti-Defamation League "World of Difference" trainer; and an "Olweus Bullying Prevention
Program" trainer, and a "Workplace Bullying Prevention Program" trainer. I sponsor our schools' Kindness Club.
Our club, as one of its activities, organized an LGBT workshop for our students. We hosted three guests to share their
stories: a gay man, a lesbian woman and a transgender man.
I write all of the above because I want you, my dear readers, to "feel me." I like my job
as a school counselor. I love children. I work hard on their behalf.
I was evaluated by Miami-Dade County
Public Schools--get ready my darlings--on seventeen eighth grade science FCAT scores. That evaluation, paired with my
Florida VAM evaluation of 23 randomly selected FSA math scores of the almost 1,100 students at my school, only gave me
I did poorly on the FSA math scores
as my outcome was: -3.541. My VAM ratio I am giggling as I type this meaningless tripe (synonyms; nonsense and rubbish) thus,
-2.6846 with a standard error of 1.319. I am not surprised at this poor showing
as I myself do poorly with math. I count on my fingers. As a flight attendant, I'd relinquish the headset, duty
free and liquor money counting to others. I like money--and would have been happy to receive the extra $400--but numbers
and I are strange bed fellows.
It certainly is no surprise to me
that my 23 students did poorly with me.
But even I can see that my evaluation,
and my loss of a highly effective $400 cannot be statistically significant. Twenty three scores. Math scores.
Seventeen points. Four hundred dollars.
might I do with those lovely four hundred dollars? I'll never know. The State of Florida won't give 'em to me.