Monday, 14 March 2011

A note I wrote about education on another site that I sort of like so I've decided to keep it here too...

The problem is NOT that it's almost impossible to get fired. That would be the problem if an oddly high percentage of teachers were crap. Yes, the tenure thing probably could be discussed more, but MOST teachers are well trained and do their job, just like most people in all other professions. Teaching seems to be in this weird category of not being allowed to want good pay. Why is that exactly?

I'm a teacher and it's way harder than most people understand... It really really is and unless you've tried it you will never understand that. I'm still learning every day and I'm in awe of some of my excellent colleagues. I've only met one teacher in 6 years who I thought shouldn't be a teacher. But his kids think he's quirky and they do well anyway...

AND can you imagine teaching for 49-50 weeks per year?? NO ONE would do it. We'd go totally insane and quit after the first year. OR you'd have to pay someone a million bucks a year to barely scrape by with their sanity...

It's very different to many jobs (every other job I've ever had) where you can sort tune out a bit and check your email and make a call or get a coffee or take a long lunch or head home early and leave it all at the shop or hide from the manager or whatever you might try to get through the day.

It's about 30 kids saying ME ME ME, demanding all of your attention constantly. It's trying to make sure they're paying attention, learning, not bullying, bullied or disrupting, not falling behind, not hungry, all while knowing your stuff and routines are worthwhile for them to be in your classroom each day.

And now unfortunately it's also about really caring about your students and your craft while being personally and institutionally berated by back-seat driving assholes who couldn't handle grade fives in a private school.