In this piece i remarked on the strange phenomenon of a piece originally posted in February again going viral on the Washington Post website. Because in that original piece, I noted that what I was observing was a part of the reason I had retired from the classroom, and as regular readers here know I have decided to "un-retire" I thought I owed an explanation.
Valerie Strauss has just posted Teacher who left: Why I am returning to school.
Oh, and I am not so sure why Valerie chose to mention my status with respect to recommends. That is a function of (a) how long I have been here and (b) the fact that Front Pagers used to not be able to receive recommendations on FP stories. I duly expect the rightful claimant to that title, Meteor Blades, will pass me soon enough.
If I may, allow me to offer two snips from the new piece:
So why am I going back?and also this, my conclusion
* because even with the restrictions that exist I believe I can make a difference for my students
* because am I going into a school and into a system where people know I am going to push the envelope to connect with my students and they still hired me
* because I do not need the job in order to pay my bills, so that I can insist upon teaching with integrity
* because public schools are too important for me to abandon the field of conflict on their behalf
As you ponder what we should do about our public education (assuming you believe in public education) perhaps one thing to keep in mind is this: Is the program or path we are proposing going to contribute to thoughtful, caring adults whose focus is on each of the unique individuals we call students? Is not that what you would want for yourself, were you a student? Is it not what you would want for your child?I hope you will go to the Post website and read the entire message.
Or as John Dewey put it so many years ago:
What the best and wisest parent wants for his child, that must we want for all the children of the community. Anything less is unlovely, and left unchecked, destroys our democracy.Peace.