The Need for Public School Choice for Teachers

Kayla Vickaryous:

Eight months ago I made a major decision that some might consider a road less traveled. I consider it the only logical choice.

Last February, I accepted a job as a founding teacher at the new Destiny Middle School – the first public charter middle school in the Puget Sound region, and one of only nine charter schools in the state. As a sixth grade teacher, I have seen firsthand the challenges that are so difficult to overcome in a large, traditional school district.

I did not make this decision to join a new charter school lightly. At my former school, I worked for intelligent administrators, passionate teachers, and tenacious, bright, and resilient students. I did not leave my former position as a 6th grade English language arts teacher at a traditional public school because I didn’t believe in the good intentions of my fellow employees or the potential of my students, but because I am certain this potential was stifled by a system of inequity; a system where the seemingly simple concept of choice is diminished by competing political agendas and a prescriptive approach to teaching a multitude of diverse learners.