My State Superintendent Will Eat Doughnuts For Me Because That’s What Real Leaders Do

Every two years the Department of Public Instruction issues a Teacher Working Conditions Survey to get a sense of how public school teachers feel about their working environment.

This is the first one with Mark Johnson as the state superintendent. And I have one big (among smaller ones) complaint about the survey: it should ask teachers views not only of their school, but MORE of their perceptions of the county / LEA leadership and state leadership.

I again took the survey and true to form it is a survey that is skewed. It is hard to take a survey seriously from DPI when the questions never get beyond a teacher’s actual school. There is never any way to convey in a questionnaire from the state what teachers think about the state’s role in education or how testing is affecting working conditions.

Then in a boost to get all techers to answer the survey, State Supt. Mark Johnson sent out a video with a “sweet” incentive for teachers to fill out an already slanted survey.

If we as a state get %95 of teachers to complete the survey and are the top state as far as participation percentages are concerned, Mark Johnson said he would compete in the Krispy Kreme Challenge in Raleigh next year.


That race has participants run 2.5 miles to a destination,  eat one dozen doughnuts, and then run another 2.5 miles.

Mark Johnson will run that race and eat doughnuts for us.

Mark Johnson will literally throw up, yak, hurl, puke, upchuck, heave, vomit, and blow chunks for us.

Just so that he can hear from us in the most impersonal ways possible.

Oddly enough,  as a teacher I usually run around campus a distance of about five miles a day (according to my FitBit), eat in a rapid fashion because of time constraints around halfway through the “race” of a day, and listen to my students, parents, and fellow teachers in a personal manner without a survey or need for technology.


But I do not use that as an incentive to get people to raise a percentage or to look like I am really going the extra mile.

Because, it’s the job.

Mark Johnson seems to think that he can incentivize teachers with eating doughnuts to make him look as if he can galvanize the public school teaching force into solidarity.

Actually, the best way he can incentivize teachers is by actually doing his job, fighting for more resources, standing up to the NCGA instead of bowing down to them, and  LISTENING to teachers authentically.

That’s his job.

Besides many schools use Krispy Kreme doughnuts to raise needed money to keep vital activities running and get resources that Johnson should be fighting for.