When your social circle consists of approximately 75% secondary social science teachers, you know you need some new friends. I’m not kidding. Most of my close friends teach the kiddies. Well, not children, per se, but high school students in the monster that is Los Angeles Unified School District. They all teach social science (history, economics, government) and they all do a damn good job of it.
Because of my current and former roommates, I know way too much about the current life of a teacher. I can tell ou about standards, the California state credentialing process, classroom management issues, teacher education programs, lesson planning, World War II and the French Revolution. This is what I get for hanging out with them and accompanying them to numerous happy hours.
It’s no surprise to me that many of my best friends have gone into teaching. It’s not that there wasn’t anything better to do. Instead, they all have a strong commitment to empowering youth and going back to the same communities where they grew up.
I know that the K-12 (or K-16, depending on who you ask) public school system in California is suffering as a whole. But I also know that in schools such as Jefferson HS, Belmont HS, Jordan HS, Downtown Magnet, and Edison Middle School there are a half dozen wonderful teachers who are an excellent job and making sure their students can tell you all about globalization and the Treaty of Versailles.
So, on Tuesday, May 3rd, hug a teacher and tell him/her, “Happy National Teacher Day!”
(You have all week since it’s Teacher Appreciation Week)