Teachers no longer simply teach their subjects. Our schools are now responsible for raising children. Not many kids learn basic “life skills” and attitudes at home, so we expect teachers to do what moms and dads won’t (or can’t). Oh, and they’re also supposed to make sure the kids get fed.
Too many schools now have food / toiletry / clothing pantries for kids whose homes can’t provide basic necessities. These are run by volunteers … and teachers, of course.
We ask teachers to teach, feed, clothe, and parent our children, but refuse them the resources, support, and time to do the job. Instead, we shame them for not saving our fractured society.
“Not only are schools and teachers expected to fix all of society’s ills, we are also expected to turn out a fantastic product,” Susan says. “It would be nice if it could be remembered that we are working with human capital, not with a product whose outcome we can control completely.”
And therein lies the biggest key to understanding why teacher’s suck …
Our teachers end up parenting a lot of kids, and that role comes with a costly emotional and psychological investment. Teachers are often caring for students who are functioning orphans—and they do it for countless kids. While they’re teaching their preps, answering emails and phone calls from angry parents, trying to ignore what some yahoo has said about them on social media, and filling out an insane amount of hoop-jumping documentation to help some politician get re-elected, they’re also trying to get the girl who’s been raped into counseling, making sure the kid out of rehab stays clean and on track, and trying to tenderly engage that discipline problem who’s now living on the streets because his parents are both in jail.