Rick Diguette wrote an op-ed titled, “Has freshman year in college become grade 12½?” on Sunday. His piece addresses the lackluster writing habits of college freshmen, and suggests that professors are having to teach writing skills students should have learned in high school. What Peter Smagorinsky said in return, though, is an argument everyone needs to hear:
If you want kids to learn how to write, then put your money to work to provide teachers the kinds of conditions that enable the time to plan effective instruction, guide students through the process, and assess their work thoughtfully and considerately.
Otherwise, you may as well add yourself to the list of reasons that kids these days can’t write. (Smagorinsky, 2014)
Throughout the op-ed, Smagorinsky attacks the policies in place that do damage to our classrooms, instead of attacking our teachers. It is worth a read, and needs to be shared. More people need to see arguments like this — ones that defend our teachers and the public school system.