Principal “Reflections & Projections”
WHO DO WE …….
Who do we listen to? Who do we model ourselves after? Who do we value?
Hopefully each question caused you to pause, reflect and think. After reading a recent CNN article titled “What teachers really want to tell parents” written by Ron Clark, I did just that. Mr. Clark is also the author of "The End of Molasses Classes: Getting Our Kids Unstuck -- 101 Extraordinary Solutions for Parents and Teachers," and the founder of The Ron Clark Academy, which educators from around the world have visited to learn. I have not read his book, but plan to in the near future.
The CNN article focuses on the tough issues that teachers deal with on a daily basis and how frustrated most are becoming due to parental issues. The gist of the article is this; unrealistic expectations are driving many good educators out of the field, especially young educators.
This paragraph in the article may be the most telling: “For starters, we are educators, not nannies. We are educated professionals who work with kids every day and often see your child in a different light than you do. If we give you advice, don't fight it. Take it, and digest it in the same way you would consider advice from a doctor or lawyer. I have become used to some parents who just don't want to hear anything negative about their child, but sometimes if you're willing to take early warning advice to heart, it can help you head off an issue that could become much greater in the future.”
Mr. Clark continues by asking all parents to “please quit with all of the excuses”, and urges parents to “be a partner not a prosecutor.” Another paragraph of significance is this one: “We know you love your children. We love them, too. We just ask -- and beg of you -- to trust us, support us and work with the system, not against it. We need you to have our backs, and we need you to give us the respect we deserve. Lift us up and make us feel appreciated, and we will work even harder to give your child the best education possible. That's a teacher's promise, from me to you.” Mr. Clark’s full article can be found at: http://www.cnn.com/2011/09/06/living/teachers-want-to-tell-parents/index.html?hpt=hp_c2
I urge all adults to be a model for our youth. The youth of today need it more than ever. Times are tough! It is easy to blame others, make excuses, take the easy way out, disagree with every decision, etc. Instead of criticizing one another, let’s revert back to helping one another. Let’s renew kindness! As Winston Churchill quoted, “We may make a living by what we get. We make life by what we give.” We must realize that to that one special youth you may believe you are just one person, but to that one youth, you might just be the world.
Back to the start of this column, Who do we….?? Is it a parent? Is it a teacher? Is it a neighbor? It is my hope you know the answer. I do, for me – thanks Dad!!
Gandhi would tell us – “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
Until next time,