The El Paso Independent School District has changed the job description and title of about 150 math and literacy coaches. Those employees will now have to reapply for their jobs, and the teachers union is not happy about it.

Math and literacy coaches will have to reapply to become active learning leaders, or ALLs, something EPISD says help teachers "develop lessons using project-based learning, technology, hands-on activities and other types of teaching styles."

Teacher associations say that isn't a whole lot different than what the math and literacy coaches are doing right now.

I hear from friends who are literacy coaches that this move is akin to trimming the hedges while your house is on fire. They say this is a cosmetic change that won't change the way things are done in classrooms, it will only add additional layers of bureaucracy under a new program. They also say that this announcement is EPISD's attempt to divert focus away from it's announcements of moving Central office, as well as of making sweeping changes in schools.

One of my friends who works at Central Office said you can always tell that this kind of move is a smokescreen because it was done without input from the teacher's associations, and it was rolled out to the media without any public discussion beforehand.

I have granddaughters who attend EPISD schools, and I don't think that fancy titles and vague wording of "moving the district into the 21st century" are what we want to hear. We want to hear that schools are being run properly and not falling apart despite millions of dollars in taxpayer money flowing into the district. We want to hear that our kids are getting their diploma and going on to higher education well-prepared. We want to hear that district officials are concentrating on making that happen, rather than concentrating on putting nonsense programs into place that will bog teacher's days down even more.

C'mon, EPISD, when are you going to remember that you are in business to educate children?