Suspended Jackson County teacher makes his case on YouTube

What began as an individual decision by Cullowhee Valley School’s Doug Ward, who teaches fifth-grade exceptional students, soon resulted in action by the Jackson County School District, a news story and blog posts, and now a YouTube video that takes the suspended-with-pay teacher’s case to the public.

On his YouTube entry, Ward explains to viewers why he refused to give the required test (the NCEXTEND1 Alternative Assessment — a standardized, task-based assessment for students with significant cognitive disabilities) to an 11-year-old student who was functioning on a 1-year-old’s developmental level. “What are they asking of us teachers,” he asks, when a student has progressed developmentally by one year in 11 years of life, yet to pass the required test must progress a full three years in the space of one school-year of instruction.

Jackson County blogger Gulahiyi comments, “Hats off to someone willing to pay the price for the courage of his convictions.” The Asheville Citizen-Times, which reported the story, said that calls to school adminstrators about the matter “were not returned by deadline Tuesday night.”

— Nelda Holder, associate editor


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2 thoughts on “Suspended Jackson County teacher makes his case on YouTube

  1. chiefmanteo

    This takes both courage and integrity as a teacher. Fantastic and brave. I hope the students appreciate it even if the administrator don’t (or can’t.) Perhaps it will trigger some sensibility in school testing. To all you hard working teachers, keep up the good work and thank you for all you do for the students and our communities.

  2. buttertup

    i have two children that scored some among some of the highest in their school. but i have a little one who struggles so hard. the teachers and children are under this almost imposssible if not artifcial pressure. so unfair to teachers,students and parents. i agree with doug and my prayers for he and his family

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