Teacher Acronyms and What They Really Mean


Acronym Teacher

If you’ve ever written an IEP as part of an RTI because NCLB says every student must meet their AYP… then you’re probably a teacher. To be honest, many of us have no idea what those acronyms stand for, we just smile and nod during faculty meetings. So the next time someone asks you what all those letters stand for, try giving them some of these definitions. They’re all wrong… but they feel so right.

1. PLC-  People Languishing in Conferences

PLC-  People Languishing in Conferences

Ah, the dreaded PLC. Yet another meeting that steals precious minutes of free time from teachers. What are they for? What do they do? No one really seems to know. All we know is that we must attend them every week.

AKA: Professional Learning Community

2. PD – Personal Depression

There’s nothing quite like being told how to teach by people who don’t teach. Teachers spend endless hours hearing about fancy new methods and the latest cool teaching trends when all we really want to do is use that time to… gee, I don’t know… grade papers, lesson plan, clean up our rooms, or really anything other than being in that meeting.

AKA: Professional Development

3. SAT – Seriously? Another Test?

For a long time, the hot new wave of education was to test students as often as humanly possible. Chapter tests, district tests, state tests, national tests, benchmark tests… the list is endless. Then, after testing their little brains out, they get near the end of high school and surprise! There’s a massive test you need to take to determine what colleges will want you. And does anyone understand how these things are scored anymore? They mess with the scoring system as often as politicians mess with our curriculum.

AKA: Scholastic Aptitude Test or Scholastic Assessment Test

4. DOE- Devaluation Of Educators

Does it worry anyone else that a large number of people deciding the policies and guidelines for teachers and schools have never taught before? Or worse yet, haven’t actually spent time in a classroom since they were a student? Before you pass a law affecting teachers, you should have to at least walk a mile in our shoes… and maybe go at least 4 hours without a bathroom break.

AKA: Department Of Education

5. PTA – Parents Teaching Apathy

Of course, the goal of a PTA is to bring together parents and teachers for the good of the students. Usually, though these groups are spearheaded by a very small number of very involved parents who do all the work themselves. Schools with thousands of kids have PTA attendants you can count on one hand.

AKA: Parent Teacher Association

6. DEAR- Drop Everything And Run

Teachers will do anything to get their students reading, and coming up with adorable acronyms is one way to do it. However, getting kids interested in reading can be so frustrating that when that final bell sounds all you want to do is DEAR… straight to the parking lot.

AKA: Drop Everything And Read

7. OSHA – Oh Stressful Heaps of Assessments

Every year, we teachers have a long list of things we need to get done so we’re ready to go for the first day of school. We have to plan, set up our rooms, and we have to sit through endless hours of safety training that teach important lessons like… don’t drink hazardous chemicals, fires are bad, and asbestos is not your friend. Thank you for those ever so wise words, can I go back to my room now?

AKA: Occupational Safety and Health Administration

8. ELA- Endless Linguistic Abominations

Have you ever tried reading an essay that a student has written from beginning to end? Did it make you cry? Then congratulations you’ve just witnessed an ELA. Has proper grammar been collectively wiped from everyone’s consciousness when we weren’t looking or something?

AKA: English Language Arts

9. AYP- Always Yearning for Progress

9. AYP- Always Yearning for Progress

AYP is the cornerstone of what makes a good teacher. We are not looking for perfection because I mean seriously have you seen us? We are far from perfect. All we want is for our students to just be a little bit better than they were the day before. 

AKA: Adequate Yearly Progress

10. GPA- Grading Piles of Assignments

Students may be worried about their GPA, but teachers know that during every free second of their life they are constantly engaged in this little GPA of their own. It never ends! There are two things in this world that will never be empty: a dirty laundry hamper and an ungraded paper basket.

AKA: Grade Point Average

Read: 20 Vocabulary Words That Only Make Sense to Teachers

Teacher Acronyms and what they really mean

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David Rode

Dave is a middle school math teacher. He's also a musician, a community theater, dad to two amazing children, and he doesn't get a lot of sleep.

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