Teachers anxious, frustrated over education uncertainties

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

INDIANAPOLIS — School’s out for the summer, but this year is hardly a relaxing break for teachers.

There is so much uncertainty in Indiana education right now that some teachers say it’s giving them anxiety.

“Anxious, frustrated, annoyed. I feel like things are out of my control,” English teacher Jacob Pactor said he hears from fellow teachers.

Pactor and math teacher Tom Hakim, both Teach Plus Teaching Policy Fellows, sat down with Fox 59 to talk about all of the upheaval in state education.

Teachers are still awaiting guides to new Indiana state standards, the completion of an overhaul in school A to F grading systems and what will happen with a replacement to the ISTEP test.

The state is working to hire a company to create a replacement test for the 2015-2016 school year, but it must also make changes to the existing ISTEP for kids to take it in the spring of next year.

“We’ve got a lot on our plates right now, but we’re going to do what’s best for Indiana students,” State Board of Education member Gordon Hendry said.

Hendry and other education leaders also face a challenge by the federal government to Indiana’s flexibility in funding. If a response to a conditional status on the state’s No Child Left Behind waiver is not approved, hundreds of millions in funding could be in jeopardy.

“We’re trying to do the best we can to bring in the information, sort through it and then get ready for the upcoming school year,” Hakim said.

Teachers themselves are forging forward, hoping politics can be set aside and decisions made quickly.

“My message to parents would be stick with us, let us do what we do best and work through the best ways to teach your children this year,” Hakim said.