28 episodes

Three middle school teachers and their guests share what it's really like to be in a classroom today, how policies affect teaching and students, and what teachers actually think would work better. Listen in to their off the cuff, unscripted discussions, debates, and sometimes, plain silliness as they discuss today's biggest issues facing schools.

Transparency in Teaching (stuff‪)‬ Transparency in Teaching

    • Education
    • 5.0 • 28 Ratings

Three middle school teachers and their guests share what it's really like to be in a classroom today, how policies affect teaching and students, and what teachers actually think would work better. Listen in to their off the cuff, unscripted discussions, debates, and sometimes, plain silliness as they discuss today's biggest issues facing schools.

    026 Why Teachers Quit 2.0: Find out why Carolyn quit the classroom.

    026 Why Teachers Quit 2.0: Find out why Carolyn quit the classroom.

    The very first episode we produced remains one of our most popular. Why teachers quit should be something every would-be teacher should ponder before taking out loans to pay for college. You don't want to be one of the 44% of newbies who quit within the first five years, because then what will you do with all that useless college loan debt you accrued?  

    We contacted a teacher friend of ours who had recently fled the classroom to preserve her sanity. She gave up the wear and tear of teaching for a position helping teachers avoid the stress that caused her to leave in the first place. We've known Carolyn since her first days in the profession. Now as the middle school curriculum math specialist for her district she's able to share her experiences with new teachers and offer them the kind of support all new teachers should have. 

     So today we revisit the day-to-day issues teachers have to negotiate. Believe me, if it were just teaching we had to do, there wouldn't be the quitting issue  But teachers deal with so much more than delivering the curriculum. There are discipline issues, extra duties before and after school, lesson planning and grading that follow you home, parent phone calls, meetings... Those are just the physical issues. Let's not forget the emotional toll of caring for kids who come from all kinds of homes and deal with all kinds of unknowns. The teacher may be the only positive connection in a student's life. This job has no quitting time. 

    We also give our two cents about what can be done to avoid the problems in the first place. Unfortunately, credentialing programs don't really do the best job of preparing virgin teachers for the classroom. You can listen to our other podcast on that topic here.



    If you're thinking of becoming a teacher, this episode is required listening. Teaching is the toughest job you'll ever love. I know that's pretty cliche, but it's true. It's really THE most important job on the planet 


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    • 1 hr 14 min
    025 When Did Public Schools become Public Enemy #1?

    025 When Did Public Schools become Public Enemy #1?

    Critical Race Theory (CRT) has become the latest way to demonize public schools. I admit when I first heard CRT I thought it was some medical test for the heart. Now it has become the fear-raising focus of concern among many people inside and outside of education.

    To better understand what CRT is I spent a lot of hours looking at where it came from in the first place. The research makes me believe that most people don’t really understand what CRT is or its purpose.

    An article from The JournalistsResource.org  tries to help journalists learn how to better cover this controversy. The author quotes Dorinda Carter Andrews, chairperson for the Department of Teacher Education at Michigan State University She explains that

    “Critical race theory is not an ideology or a political orientation that assumes white people are bad; it assumes white supremacy is bad in all of its forms. It’s a practice or approach that provides language and a lens for examining racism at institutional and structural levels, Underlying this is the premise that racism is endemic to American society and that white supremacist ideas and practices should be dismantled.”

    Janel George. who teaches CRT as part of a graduate course called Racial Justice in K-12 Education Policy at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy, says CRT is a theory devised by legal scholars in the 1970s. CRT initially was taught in law schools but eventually was adopted in other fields such as education and sociology.” She believes, and so do I after doing the research, "there is some mischaracterizing going on here.” George says, “Because critical race theory has the word ‘race’ in it, perhaps [people] are intentionally equating critical race theory with anything having to do with race or the teaching [about] racism.”

    Some parents fear that CRT is increasing not decreasing the idea of racial inequity. David Ryst notes in an article in the Daily Bulletin that, "'These concepts are not unifying students, they are reinforcing negative division. They are not giving teachers proper training. A lot of teachers who are vocal with their liberal ideas are pushing those ideas on students. It’s a good theory to examine maybe at a college level,' he said. 'But, what they’re teaching here leads to guilt, shame and victimhood. And everything is viewed as oppressor versus the oppressed. I’m all for inclusion, but this is not it.'”

    Now the fear for teachers is states are beginning to regulate what can and cannot be said about race, racism and slavery. But finding elementary, middle, and high schools that actually teach CRT has been near impossible. So where does that leave teachers now?  What is actually happening in the classroom? How can discussions that are bound to come up be dealt with? What history is allowed to be taught and what history must be skipped? Is there really a problem or is this just politics to gin up the 2022 elections?

    Listen to our take on this controversial topic.




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    • 1 hr 1 min
    Tricks for Cost-Free Travel (or almost free) – With Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie

    Tricks for Cost-Free Travel (or almost free) – With Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie

    My husfriend and I just got back from a trip to Hawaii. It was his birthday gift to me. Nice huh! We had to jump through a few hoops to get there. Our vaccination cards made it possible to avoid a 10-day hotel quarantine. (Get vaccinated, already!!🙄). It was a quick 7-day trip. Too short, but it’s always too short when I visit the islands. On the plane ride home, the flight attendants, take advantage of people’s recent trip to paradise. They encourage passengers to sign up for the airline’s credit card. They tempt you with an ungodly amount of miles, enough for 2 roundtrips back to the islands. I took an application and started thinking of all the ways I could acquire miles. This brings me to this episode.

    Today’s bonus episode, features teacher, travel-guru Jackie Sills-Dellegrazie. You may have heard her on a previous podcast published almost a year ago when people were still dreaming of the day when travel would again be possible.  I thought now that people are finally stepping out of their homes and starting to travel, that this episode replay may be especially helpful and deserves another listen. Jackie is famous for knowing how to travel almost cost-free and she shares her tips and tricks with us in today’s show. 

    For more information about Jackie, her travel tips and to see her phenomenal photography of all the amazing places she has visited go to The GlobeTrotting Teacher.com 

     Has your district taken up arms for or against CRT? If so, how will your teaching be different? How will you approach those conversations that you know will inevitably come up in class? Let us know! Write or leave us a  voice comment here or go to TransparencyInTeaching.com and leave one there. While you're at it, we'd love it if you'd rate and review us on your favorite listening app. Your support means we can continue to bring these important discussions to you.



    Stock media song used in introduction provided by: Twoword_recordings/ Pond5


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    • 34 min
    023 What Makes an Effective Teacher Effective?

    023 What Makes an Effective Teacher Effective?

    What makes an effective teacher effective? That's a pretty subjective question, isn't it? I'm beginning to believe that so much of what people think makes education good is subjective. Like, who decides what kids need to know for state tests and how to decipher those scores? Or who decides what is important and should be taught in schools.  Not to mention, who comes up with the best way to prepare college students to become teachers? It's all someone's opinion. Somehow the "Powers the Be" (and whoever decides who they are) have to agree on what it means to be educated and who is best qualified to educate. So what does make a teacher effective?

    In today's podcast, we delve into how districts decide who stays and who goes? We examine the various qualities an "effective" teacher should have and who sets those standards. We also discuss the board certification process! Ummm, did you know there was a board certification procedure for teachers? (pssst, I didn't until recently). Why aren't districts and universities doing more to help teachers along that path? But wait! Is certification even the ultimate sign of effectiveness?

    Sharyn, Jen, and I get into what we think makes teachers effective. Surprise! Basically, it is a big mix of many factors that cannot truly be quantified in some objective way. There are too many variables. Too many moving parts contribute to a teacher's ability to make a difference in their students' lives. So what's a parent, an administrator, or district to do to be sure their students have the best teachers possible? Listen, and see if you agree with our take on what makes an effective teacher effective!

    Leave us a voice message!

    Visit TransparencyinTeaching.com to get all the resources used in today's episode


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    • 52 min
    022 New Teachers, This One's for You!

    022 New Teachers, This One's for You!

    This school year is FINALLY ending (thank god for small favors) and we are packing up our minimally used classrooms. For many teachers, this will be their last time having to do this. Covid caused many to throw in the eraser this year and turned in keys. They will look forward to new challenges this coming fall that don't entail lesson plans and students.  But for others, who are holding newly minted diplomas and teaching credentials, this summer offers time to plan for a new classroom and get ready for the beginning of an exciting, rigorous, and rewarding profession.

    With that in mind, today’s episode will be especially interesting and informative. We depart a bit from our usual back and forth banter to welcome a guest, Victoria Lucido! Vickie has recently retired after 33 years as a middle school History and Drama teacher.  Her teaching ability has been recognized by “Who’s Who of American Teachers” seven times, and she was awarded “Monterey Teacher of the Year” in 1999 by Monterey Rotary. Now, she has a new book out called, Classroom Confidential: How I survived 33 years in a public school classroom, and you can too! This book gives new teachers access to 33 years of experience in just 160 pages! 

    Today Victoria joins Jen and Anne to share her best advice for beginners.  Even us old pros can pick up a new insight or two. So grab a notepad and pencil and get ready for the advice you wish you would have learned in all those fancy college credential classes, but didn’t! Stay tuned!



    For more about Victoria:

    You can find her book on Amazon

    Her website, VictoriaLucidoBooks.com where you can find out about appearances and her many accomplishments.

    YouTube interview here and

    Read an article from the Monterey Herald


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    • 48 min
    021 What does a Teaching Credential Really Prove?

    021 What does a Teaching Credential Really Prove?

    The National Center for Education Statistics reported that in the 2017-18 school year there were 3.3 million full and part-time traditional public school teachers. That is the most recent count available. That's a lot of college tuition and credentialing fees. So does all the investment in a piece of paper that supposedly certifies a person is a competent teacher really mean anything? What does a teaching credential really prove?

    Every state requires public school teachers to jump through the hoops to earn a credential. This usually means earning a bachelor's degree, performing a few months of practice teaching, and passing a test or two. In my humble, 34 years of experience, opinion, the way colleges prepare teachers for life in a real classroom lacks enough real experience. Course work and student teaching hardly mimic what it is really like to be in charge of one's own group of pre-formed student minds. 

    I remember my first year of teaching. I cried a lot. Like every day. My then-husband would pat me on the back and say, "You'll be Ok. We need the money," as he guided me out the door.  I was the first one on campus and the last one to leave. I brought home a box of work and papers to grade every night. More than the sheer weight of the responsibility of imbuing knowledge into middle school minds was the struggle with classroom discipline. That, more than anything else, was the biggest headache of my early career. I don't remember anything in my credential courses that prepared me for that!

    Earning a credential does not a good teacher make! Jen, Sharyn, and I talk about what it takes to get a credential. We discuss what it means, and more importantly, what it doesn't mean. Of course, as always, we give our suggestions as to how to fix the credential process. 

    If you're considering a teaching career, this is a definite "must listen." And if you've already gone through the gauntlet, I'm sure you'll be doing a lot of head nodding in agreement. If we can only pass on these brilliant suggestions to those credential gatekeepers, we might lower the number of new teachers who turn in their classroom keys when they figure out what it really means to be a teacher.


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    • 1 hr 8 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
28 Ratings

28 Ratings

Bubblepopper2012 ,

Informative and entertaining and RIGHT ON!

I love listening to this podcast with Anne, Sharon, and Jenn! I listen and find myself laughing and learning and agreeing each episode. Even though we are hundreds of miles apart I feel like I’m at lunch with them again :) Thank you ladies for your insightful podcast!

Peace to All 💕 ,

Oh the joys of teaching

Listening to these teachers is a joy! I always laugh and I love their different perspectives.

robadob94 ,

Great!! Even for non-teachers

This is a great podcast not only for new and current teachers but even for non-teachers like me who are interested in what’s happening in the education world. Very informative and funny with lots of good stories of their experiences teaching. I highly recommend this to anyone interested in learning more about the education world.

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