A Tribute to My Colleagues in Public Schools

It seems that everywhere you turn these days we educators are being maligned and demonized, disrespected, not allowed to practice methods of good teaching,  repeatedly questioned and belittled, and generally presented in the public consciousness in very ugly ways .  Every time I see another such nasty mention I again feel incredibly grateful to be teaching in a private school where I am respected and where I am able to teach in ways that keep me intellectually and creatively happy. And so I am in awe of my public school colleagues  who manage to continue, in the face of all this negativity, to fight the good fight and continue to teach creatively and inform others about this too.  Teachers  like classroom teacher Mary Lee Hahn who touched me deeply yesterday when she thanked me in this giving thanks post, for for doing something that made a big difference in her professional life.  I responded with the following comment and decided to post it here too:

Mary Lee,

I’m incredibly touched and honored by your mention of me. I am incredibly grateful of your work too.  In particular my admiration knows no bounds for your staying in the classroom and fighting on behalf of good teaching and good learning. Being in a private school it is much easier for me and so I admire and respect all of you who manage to continue to teach creatively, with books, and so intimately in this time of high-stakes tests and standards.  Thank you so much for all you do.



Filed under Teaching

3 responses to “A Tribute to My Colleagues in Public Schools

  1. **wipes tears from eyes**

    Thanks, Monica. Thanks from me, and thanks on behalf of all public school teachers.

    The way I see it, it’s like Robert Frost wrote in “The Tuft of Flowers”:

    `Men work together,’ I told him from the heart,
    `Whether they work together or apart.’

    I think we’re actually all in this together, both public and private. Sometimes the energy to go on in MY corner of the teaching world comes from reading the dispatches from YOUR corner of the teaching world. Knowing what’s possible where there is more freedom helps me work all the harder to give my students the kind of education that parents of any income level would want for their children.

    What can we do about the idiots who “malign and demonize and disrespect” the teaching profession? My best defense is to continue teaching their children, with passion and creativity, to THINK FOR THEMSELVES!


  2. thanks for the kind and encouraging words

    –from another public school teacher who loves your blog :)


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