Dr. Freda Deskin celebrates her 50th consecutive year in education and looks back at how the art of teaching has changed in that time.
Freda Deskin, Ph.D., award-winning educator and founder of ASTEC Charter Schools, can mark a new achievement off of her bucket list. As of this year, Dr. Freda Deskin will have spent 50 consecutive years working in education. It’s quite an achievement on its own, but it also stood as a symbol of the progress that Dr. Freda Deskin has seen in the education system over time.
Dr. Freda Deskin Celebrates and Remembers Her 50 Years in Education
Every passing year gives us a chance to reflect and remember how much we’ve grown. In Dr. Freda Deskin’s case, her 50th consecutive year in education gives her a lot of reflecting to do! Fortunately, Dr. Freda Deskin sat down to talk about the positive change she’s seen in education during her 5-decade tenure:
- “When I began teaching, teachers were not allowed to teach if they were more than 3 months pregnant and women teachers were not allowed to wear slacks. School was never dismissed for inclement weather and children and teachers bundled up and went out for recess no matter the temperature. There was no air conditioning in the schools. These things no longer exist in schools.”
- “Until the late 70’s the top one-fourth of the women in a high school graduating class went into teaching. As more opportunities for women came about, fewer of these women entered the field of education. This led to more prescriptive teaching models.”
- “There’s been a lot of progress in just the last few years of my time in education. The Internet has provided an amazing resource for both students and teachers to learn. Computers, tablets, and other devices help students explore and gather new information faster than ever before. It also helps teachers organize lessons and teach using virtual platforms.” – Dr. Freda Deskin
- “When I remember back to my first years in education, it seems like 1,000 years ago! So much has changed since then. The approach to education was focused more on teaching the basics to mastery. As more and more state legislative mandates to add social lessons have passed, these basics have been squeezed out. Domestic violence, for example, is an important topic that once was taught in the home or in our churches. Now that is taught in school and must replace other topics.- Dr. Freda Deskin
- “Reforms in education have put more power into the hands of the government. Like most changes, this comes with the good and the bad. On the one hand, it helps standardize education to ensure that there’s a fair playing field for every student. On the other hand, it can leave some teachers feeling like they’re just ‘teaching for the test’ or having to take on the role of parents and social services. Of course, there are ways around this, and we always aim to put our students first. At ASTEC Charter Schools, tests are a means to an end, not an end in themselves.” – Dr. Freda Deskin
- “There have also been a lot of changes in how educators and students interact. Before, corporal punishment was typical in a school. Today it is a rare exception. There are a lot more protections for both students and teachers. This helps foster a safer environment in which to learn.” – Dr. Freda Deskin
- “School administrators today must wear more hats than in the past. They must be instructional leaders and understand sound business practices.” – Dr. Freda Deskin
- “Not only do I appreciate many of the changes in education over the past 50 years, I look forward to the future. As technology and laws evolve, I believe that it will be easier for students of all backgrounds to get a quality education, even if it all takes place in a virtual sphere! Our biggest challenge is getting people to go into teaching and administration. ” – Dr. Freda Deskin