Colorado Springs, CO- Colorado Springs English teacher Pauline Hawkins is resigning from teaching at Liberty High School, and she posted her resignation letter publicly on her blog. Hawkins blasted Common Core standards as the main motivator for leaving her position.
In her letter, posted at paulinehawkins.com, she wrote about why she will no longer be teaching. Hawkins did not mince words in pointing out the effects that Common Core is having on teachers.
“I can no longer be a part of a system that continues to do the exact opposite of what I am supposed to do as a teacher–I am supposed to help them think for themselves, help them find solutions to problems, help them become productive members of society.”
Hawkins has been a teacher for 11 years. She began her career as No Child Left Behind was in full swing. Since then, she wrote that her students have become “hesitant to think for themselves because they have been programmed to believe that there is one right answer.”
In a poll of 1,500 Colorado Education Association teachers, it was found that they spend over 30% of their instruction time testing students and preparing them for assessments.
Hawkins did not express frustration with the school where she had been teaching. “The problem in education today is a government problem,” she said in an interview. “It is way overstepping boundaries.” In her letter, Hawkins encouraged school administrators to think critically about whether or not Common Core standards are in the best interest of students.
Hawkins is moving to New Hampshire with her 9-year-old son, and hopes to find a job tutoring.