Education is a landscape rife with landmines, a reality we (the educators) can't ignore and can't escape. Why we do the political equivalent of circling the wagons and shooting in, I can't answer. But Bud the Teacher (in his recent comparison of teachers to Superman) offers this perspective:
I’m interested in those of us who are not invincible, who can only take so much, and who bleed, suffer and break when the rocks get tossed. I want human beings in our schools. I want kind and compassionate mortals working with our children, people who know what it means to hurt and fail and to rise up and succeed in spite of the foolish words from high places.I've been spending some time lately discovering how many educators (elementary, secondary, higher education, college, and beyond) write and/or read blogs. The sharing of ideas, the call to courage, the support of radical creativity are a goldmine for me, but I am wondering why so many of my peers don't seem to find that support from the colleagues next door or down the hall. Or from the parents of our students.
As I begin my preparations for a 9-hour teaching load next semester, I am faced with a new Blackboard system, a class I've not taught before, a not-insignificant revision of a course where I had (finally) felt comfortable, and new departmental alignments. Though I am fortunate to have supportive colleagues and administration, there are inherent risks when I bring my genuine, spontaneous (and, yes, well-prepared) self into the classroom. It's much harder some days than others.