December 5, 2023

The Time for Teachers to Rise

My 35 year old nephew is battling for his life against cv-19. His wife is in just the early stages of the disease so she can still look out for him for now. He lives in Reno so none of us in Sacramento can help. As one might imagine this is a very scary and trying time for our family as it is for every family in our city, state, country and around our world. 

Our family is in this unique age bracket where either our children are adults or their kids are preschool mostly. I can only imagine how difficult this must be for families with school age kids. Unfortunately, I don’t have to imagine too hard. As a teacher with over 20 years in the classroom I have had multiple students over the years that have gone through tragedy and I have done everything in my power to ensure that my class and school did nothing to compound that tragedy. Yes I have passed students whose performance tanked after the death of a parent. Yes, I have found unique pathways to success for students that couldn’t quite make it to class all of the time because they were homeless. And yes I have created a math program that is always looking for ways to raise every single one of my students, with multiple pathways to success, no matter who they were or where they came from. There are some that would attack me for this. Bring it on. I believe that it is our mission on earth to make people’s lives better not write them off because of where they came from or what their parents did or because there is a God Damned pandemic ravishing our planet.

If you think it is time to hold students accountable: you are wrong!!! If you think it’s time to rank and grade students: You are wrong!!! If you think it is up to you to judge a child: You are wrong!!!

This is the time when we must all rise up to our calling as teachers. This is the time when we all must become bastions of stability in an unstable world. This is the time when each and everyone of  us needs to do everything within our power to help every single child that has been entrusted to our care feel a little better about themselves and their future in our world.