Teacher of the Year Awards

[youtube_sc url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B-gQbttw9Tg&feature=youtu.be]

[youtube_sc url=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCV97Rq_Na8]

Here’s audio from my most recent interview: with Miles Dungan on RTE Radio 1

[soundcloud url=”http://soundcloud.com/leavingcertenglishnet/todaywithpatkenny”]

or click directly on this link: http://soundcloud.com/leavingcertenglishnet/todaywithpatkenny

Here’s the audio from my interview on newstalk

[soundcloud url=”http://soundcloud.com/evelynoconnor/evelyn-on-the-right-hook”]

If that doesn’t load properly just click this link instead: http://soundcloud.com/evelynoconnor/evelyn-on-the-right-hook

The article from thejournal.ie that made my acceptance speech go viral http://www.thejournal.ie/teachers-permanent-non-permanent-evelyn-oconnor-teacher-of-the-yea-502993-Jun2012/

Some further food for thought:

So why are we blindly copying the mistakes that were made in the UK and the US instead of following best international practice to improve our education system and make it once again the envy of the entire world? We were the Island of Saints & Scholars. We have become the island of Rote & Regurgitate. We want to be the Island of Dreaming & Doing.

Let’s debate this properly.

8 responses to “Teacher of the Year Awards

  1. Hi Evelyn, I have just watched your acceptance speech and I felt compelled to congratulate you on delivering such an inspirational speech. I have to tell you that your speech brought tears to my eyes. I simply want to thank you for standing up for teachers everywhere. You made so much sense. I hope that your speech gets the attention it deserves and gets those at the top talking about the issues you’ve highlighted. Fantastic work, congratulations again!

  2. Evelyn
    I came across your speech today, and I have to say, I found it incredibly moving. Your passion and love for your work comes across powerfully. It incited me anger, pride and at times, depression – and all in the space of 14 minutes. And that skill is something this State cannot afford to lose. I don’t know how, if, this will play out, but for what it’s worth I have re-shared your video on FB and started a thread on it on http://www.politics.ie as well. I just think more people need to know. Your students are looking to have you, and I wish you well, wherever that is. Ultimately, if this State fails you as much as it has failed others, then you must put yourself, and your family, first. Even if that is in Oz, NZ, the US or the UK.

  3. Well Done Evelyn. It is great to see someone talking with passion about what they believe in. I hope that someone further up the chain sees your video and takes note for you and for a lot of other teachers sake. I first read about this on the Journal.ie this morning so it looks like you are gettting your wish and going viral

  4. Evelyn, an outstanding speech, every point you make is passionate and true. Like you every June arrives and that awful feeling inside of will I have hours to do what I love to do too. Ten years doing this. Thank you for speaking up on behalf of all teachers, your students are so lucky to have you.

  5. Thanks for all of the messages of support. Really appreciate it. This is such a huge issue, so much bigger than me. Reminds me of Casablanca: “it doesn’t take much to see that the problems of three little people don’t amount to a hill of beans in this crazy world”. But a problem that effects all of our students at secondary level amounts to a whole ginormous mountain of misery methinks. If we want a good education system we have to go the right way about fixing the problems it faces.

    • What a lovely quote from a fav film of mine. You are totally right this is becoming one huge problem and going beyond a good education system if we want a good society not only economically but a population who have some love of learning after 15 years in school we have to provide the resources, impart our love of learning. Exams are important but holistic education is vital. I look at my special ed students and cry tears of frustration at times for what I no longer can do for them People have no idea how much these kids have to give armed with the right tools and I am fast running out of time to give them in a true sense and that is beyond frustrating.

  6. It’s super fly how the internet makes the world a teeny tiny place – here’s an article on a co-operative blog of American educators discussing my speech http://coopcatalyst.wordpress.com/2012/06/30/lessons-from-ireland-rebel-with-an-educational-cause/

  7. Niamh Barry

    Dear Evelyn,
    I am replying to this post to give my appreciation to you for taking a risk. You stood up and put your neck on the line, while the rest of the young teachers lie low clasping to our ‘part time’ jobs in fear. If we speak out, then we are ungrateful. If we remain silent, then we are cowards. We all love teaching-the commraderie of the staff and the energy and enthusiasm of the pupils. I believe it is time that we all rebelled by highlighting how lucky this government is to have hard-working, highly educated, motivated and inspiring teachers. They cannot recognise this and I fully beleive they do not understand the education system they have created. ‘Non-permanent’ teachers all know RPT, PT, CID, FTC inside out. I challenge Ruairi Quinn to explain each of these contract types, their eventualities and conditions. I am doubtful that he would be capable of doing so. This is the beginning of a journey which we will win, without education Ireland is at a standstill.