The movie Bad Teacher was recently released, and I’ve seen several articles implying that this movie, along with other media, is just another example of the dismal state of public education and the teachers. I find this funny, come on people, it’s just a movie! They make movies about sleep-deprived doctors, mistake-prone nurses, cheating lawyers, crooked politicians, cops on the dole, and nepotism in the fire departments. No one ever asks is this reflective of those professions? Or implies the ruination of the country because they watched a movie. The public watches them, says that was entertaining, and that’s the end of it.
Public education is in a realm all by itself, why is that? Well I’ve given it a lot of thought, and I’ve come to the conclusion that everyone thinks they can teach better than the teachers. Sure there are bad teachers out there, but there are also bad politicians, bankers, CEO’s, policemen, nurses, doctors, and firemen. There are great teachers out there also. I challenge anyone out there, including the President of the United States, to do my job for just one day, one week! I just want you to make sure you know and understand all of the students, their learning styles, their families, the state and national standards, the curriculum, and how are you going to move every single child forward each day, in each subject area. That is in addition to lesson planning, professional development, duty time, contacting parents, and making sure your classroom isn’t chaos, and finally grading papers each and every night.
Public education doesn’t need a bunch of critics, or people who think they can do our job better, what we need are schools with air-conditioners, resources, books, money to hire more qualified teachers, and keep them in their jobs with a decent salary that is above the poverty line. We need people to support the local schools and help educate our children. Let’s face it, our children are our future and if we don’t put our money there, what will our future be? We need to rebuild the public education system, instead of rebuilding Iraq and Afghanistan. Just think what our military could accomplish if they had to have a bake sale every time they needed a new plane or helicopter? You laugh, but it’s the truth, our PTO and communities are having bake sales, helping with staff and books, and baking cakes to keep us going.
Not a pretty sight, I can assure you, but it works and teachers around the country feel blessed to have those parents and community member who believe in them.
So tonight or tomorrow, when you are sipping that soda and watching the billion-dollar entertainment industry poke fun at teachers, remember, the key word here is entertainment! There are hard working, dedicated, underpaid, creative teachers out there trying to make a difference in the lives of children, so go show your support!