Teachers Show Passion for Education
Teacher Town Hall kicks off NBC/Scholastic Education Nation conference
The first segment of the NBC Education Nation summit began Sunday in a temporary structure over the ice rink at Rockefeller Center. NBC Nightly news anchor Brian Williams moderated a Town Hall meeting in a white plastic tent full of teachers and journalists.
Thousands of teachers also participated online, sending in comments as the discussions got really heated. Teachers both at the event and online responded passionately to the topics discussed. They engaged in spirited discussions about what they need to do to help students achieve the very best.
“This was a terrific opportunity to let teachers have a voice,” said Mark Lukasiewicz, NBC executive producer for the conference. “What we planned was to make sure to get as many teachers as we can and let them talk. And boy, they did not disappoint.”
The teachers themselves also found that they could relate to other teachers and their stories. Many have faced low-income families whose students were not doing well in school. Others discussed how best to understand their students and how to help them be successful as adults.
“I met a girl who does a lot of project-based learning in her classroom,” said teacher Amy Beenedetti. “So, I plan to do more projects like that, too.” That’s just what one teacher learned while standing in line with other teachers waiting to be seated.
Teachers were buzzing with conversation during every commercial break and grouped together after the town hall to continue their discussions.
Dennis van Roekel, the president of the National Education Association, a labor union that represents public school personnel, spoke to this Kid Reporter after the event.
“I think there will be more discussion about education,” he said when asked what affect the conference might have on America’s classrooms. “And I hope what happens out of that is that we stop just talking about only a piece of education and look at the whole system.”
PHOTO: Kid Reporters Andrew Liang and Mariam El Hasan at the Education Nation Teacher Town Hall at Rockefeller Center in New York City, September 26, 2010. (Photo by Suzanne Freeman)