I’ve asked my friend and former student, Peyton, to write a guest post for my blog. I never had Peyton in one of my English classes, but I am my school’s student council sponsor and she was in student council all through high school. She was president her senior year and that’s when we really got to know each other. I am truly blessed to know her and I know you’ll love her writing. I encourage you to follow her blog peytonthetownred.wordpress.com.
“Why Teachers?” by Peyton
As an eighteen-year-old and a freshman in college, I have spent my whole life as a student. On top of that, my parents are both educators, so most of my childhood was spent in school, and most of the people in my life are teachers. It is safe to say that the very person I am today is completely because of the Springdale School District and the educators in it.
Our society questions our teachers often. They push their beliefs onto your children; they try to fail your hard-working child. Trust me, I’ve heard every fault of any teacher. I also realize that many of them do not meet the expectations that we have for them. Most students have had every type of teacher imaginable, and I bet most of them would agree with me when I say that one good teacher outweighs any “bad” one that you have ever had. The good ones are the ones that you remember, and there any many.
Classroom teachers spend more time working, thinking about work, and spending money on work than most people with 9-5 office jobs. I see it first-hand. Teaching, contrary to what many of you might believe, is not something you can just walk away from at night.
Here’s the deal, I realize that I live with a limited understanding of education. I was in, arguably, one of the best districts in the country with literally every opportunity set in front of me. Our district pays teachers well; therefore, many of the good ones come to Springdale. I am lucky, and I realize that the system doesn’t work in every student’s favor. There isn’t enough communication between teachers and higher government, and school funding is just one of the many hoops schools must jump through. I’m not here to pick apart the system. In fact, I’m here to share with you the only part of it that works: teachers. Why do we need them?
I could tell you countless stories of teachers and the things they have done for any number of students, but today I’m just going to focus on how teachers have impacted my life.
When I was young, teachers gave birth to me. They read me books at night and taught me right from wrong. When I turned five, teachers signed me up for kindergarten. Then, teachers taught me how to work in groups; they taught me how to count. As I grew, teachers gave me opportunities. They let me be editor of the yearbook and officers of their clubs. They took me to Washington D.C., England, Scotland, Paris, and Spain. Teachers helped me travel the world. They showed me how to appreciate literature, and that loving it was cool. Teachers invested time in me; they gave up personal time to prepare me for EAST Conference, to help me navigate Calculus, and to organize a homecoming. Teachers modeled tolerance and empathy. They loved me; they cared for me. Teachers allowed me to be fully myself in their classrooms. They are the reason why I have a blog, why I love to write, and they are a huge part of who I am and the person I am still becoming.
So, why teachers?
Because they are invested in the next generation, and, as evidenced by me, have a direct impact in the lives of their students.
Here is to celebrating the teachers in your life, the one’s that you only see in your memories, and the one’s that are to come. Thank them. Support them. Protect them. They are the only thing that works in the system that is being turned on it’s head.