I hate waffle, so I’ll get to the point – bullet points, that is…
1. Teachers used to be revered and respected members of society – what happened?
2. “Long holidays”? Wake up and smell the gallons of strong, sweet coffee! The kids get long holidays (although not too long, I hasten to add), while the teachers are marking, planning and attending to various other reams of paperwork they are expected to attend to these days.
3. Maybe it would be better if teachers (not kids (or teaching assistants!)) did get shorter holidays – that is to say, if the non-term/non-timetabled time they presently spend working was recognised and made “official” – so ignorant members of the public might possibly stop banging on about how few hours they “work”!
4. On the whole… do your trust your kids’ school? Do you trust your kids’ teachers (and other school staff) to educate, look after and do all they can to provide your kids with the tools to make positive, fulfilling lives? If not, put your money where your mouth is and have a go at doing this thankless and at times emotionally wrenching job yourselves. If you do… give your children’s educators a little more respect!
5. Of course teachers get paid a decent wage – but they work bloody hard for it! Do they not deserve to occasionally think about themselves and their own/their families’ needs?
6. Many teachers these days are not happy – but they stick at the job because they believe in it – not just because it pays the bills. Shouldn’t we be concerned about the happiness of the educators of our children? If the teachers aren’t happy, how does this reflect on the children? How does it reflect on their futures and hence the future of our society?
7. The government wants a nation of pen-pushing bumlickers… don’t believe me? Well… people are leaving teaching because of all the paperwork, bureaucracy and endless accountability. Teaching (if things continue as they are) will henceforth attract people who like all the paperwork, bureaucracy and endless accountability. Children will be taught in an environment infused with paperwork, bureaucracy and endless accountability – aka pen-pushing and bumlicking. They will be ingrained with the belief and the philosophy that this is how the world is, how it should be and how it works most efficiently. They will therefore seek careers that are infused with a hefty old portion of pen-pushing and bumlicking… you see?
8. Teachers (on the whole) are great!
9. Teaching assistants (on the whole) are also great!
10. All the other school staff (on the whole) are great as well!