Friday, September 13, 2013

Any Good Teachers Out There?

To all of the educators in my family that have and continue to inspire me, to all of those that have taught my children over the years and are still doing so at the college level,

You do a good thing. When life in the teaching profession gets you down, as I know it does, remember that. YOU DO A GOOD THING!  YOU MAKE A DIFFERENCE.
 So often, I hear teachers being criticized as a whole. The good ones are often criticized with the ones who don't care. I'm just really tired of that. As in any profession, yes, there are bad teachers out there. There are teachers who show up at 7:45 and hit the door at 3:15.  There is also a public education system that needs a major overhaul.  

But let me give you the flip side of that.  There are teachers who would love to have the opportunity to just teach. In spite of the "broken-ness" of the system, they continue on. The paperwork necessary, the paper trails necessary to cover themselves is unbelievable. There are teachers who spend many, many hours at the school - long before you arrive at your job and long after you leave, showing up at 6 or 6:30 during the school year and leaving at 7 or 8 in the evening to prepare themselves to do the best job they can. There are teachers who spend the summer working on the next school year. Their "lunch hour" during the school year is usually about 20 minutes, if they get that much.  These same teachers are educating special needs students in their mainstream classroom along with students of every other ability, being required to come up with separate lessons and activities for those special need students, as well as modifying their lesson plans to meet the academic needs of the other 15-20 students in the classroom with varying abilities.  Someone please tell me how that works successfully! I just have a difficult time seeing how that benefits anyone.
These same teachers leave college with a BS in Education making less in one month than most professionals make in 2 weeks or in a bonus check.  So, so shameful!
Let me encourage you to walk a day, or a week, or better yet, a school year in their shoes, dealing with the day to day life as a school teacher, making the salary that they make, and then...only then have you earned the right to discuss how you would do things differently while being forced to work "within the system".  Maybe then, you could better see how giving a day every now and then to help out a teacher, to make a difference in some children's lives and pay back what so many teachers have done for your children would be beneficial instead of talking about how it's broken.   
Any good teaches out there?  You bet there are!