Halfway through my career as an engineer, I decided I needed to do something with a higher purpose, so I became a physics teacher. For the past decade, I have been making a difference in the lives of my students by being a good, innovative teacher.
In addition to my bachelor’s degree and State of Ohio teaching certificate, I hold a MA in Education and a MAT in Physics.
I have been voted “Favorite Teacher,” awarded a BP grant, and worked on Bill Gates/KnowledgeWorks innovative education projects during the seven years I taught in Toledo Public Schools. I am now teaching at Penta Career Center in Perrysburg as the instructor of the new Alternative Energy Career Technical program, Green Energy Management (GEM).
I’m proud to say that of the first GEM graduating class of 2011, all have gone on to post-secondary education/training. The GEM program was featured on the Ohio Department of Education web site, and I was a presenter at the 2011 Ohio Education Economic Summit in Columbus. I am a Sustainable Energy Education and Training (SEET) educator currently developing curriculum for various alternative energy careers for the National Science Foundation.
Educators are doing great things for students and public education in Ohio, yet some politicians who have never stepped foot in my classroom, or any classroom since they were students themselves, want to implement a one-size-fits-all teaching approach. I have worked hard to develop one of the first programs in the state to prepare our youth for the future, but now Columbus lawmakers—who don’t have my students’ best interests in mind—are working to dismantle that progress.
I have worked more than 25 years in industry as both a union and non-union employee, but I never felt I needed union protection until I entered education.
I have never before felt such an “us” versus “them” environment, which is not conducive to teaching or learning. And now they want to silence the voices of teachers and educators with Issue 2.
This November, I’m voting NO on Issue 2 because it will hurt all of us.
—Vicki Miller, career technical instructor, Perrysburg