Monday, June 15, 2009
I find myself confused. It is the last day of classes. The final review of material before students take their state exam, the Regents. Why are the halls empty? Why are the classrooms at a quarter capacity? I shake my head and wonder, "Was I like this when I was a teenager in high school? " Of course, as a teenager, I liked school. It was my escape from the chaos and insanity at home.
I asked my colleagues. Some gave the typical cynical answer. "These kids don't care about their future, so why should we?" Some said that the students have working hard all year long and one day of rest won't really make a difference. I believe that we have failed them, if in fact, they "don't care" about their education. Today should be that last push, that one last chance to study/ review for exams.
At times, I truly believe that we as a society do not place enough emphasis on education. I look at other countries where schooling and educators are revered. I then compare it to the NYC high school where I teach. There is no comparison. I often appalled at the lack of respect for education and teachers. But how do we make it better? I am already counselor, mother, friend, teacher and everything else under the sun. What more can a teacher do to ensure that her students take education seriously, especially in this economy.
So here I sit, planning lessons for today and no students to teach.