The Charlotte Observer and News & Observer ran a piece on teacher voices this week called “How North Carolina’s teachers are making their voices heard.”
It highlights just a few of the thousands of people who have advocated for public schools here in NC this past year. It is by no means even a hint at a complete list of those people or entities who make the largest positive impact on public schools.
In fact, I would argue that those who affect the most positive change in many respects will never have their names or organizations known on a wide basis.
But what the article does highlight is that it is a new year and asks if the momentum that was gained last year will continue this year. And the article is a reminder that many in North Carolina do not believe that public education teachers are deserving of the changes so many of us are fighting for.
One of the writers of the article mentioned above is T. Keung Hui of the N&O. He tweeted out an email he received in response to the article that is rather eye-opening and not surprising at the same time.
“Most public employee teachers are in these positions because they lack the talent to compete in the private sector. Never in the history of humankind have so few demand so much, from so many, for so little…”
Such statements are some of the very reasons that I will keep advocating for public schools.
I could maybe respond by saying that some of the most talented people I have ever come across are teachers and that maybe that talent was matched with a fueled passion to teach which culminated in public service.
I could maybe respond by saying 20,000+ people in Raleigh on May 16th doesn’t sound like a “few.”
I could maybe respond by saying that what we have demanded is really just fully funding public schools.
I could maybe respond by saying that that hyperbole concerning the “history of humankind” is not lost on me.
I could maybe respond by saying that the inherent ignorance displayed by this proves how valuable having an education really is and that the reasoning he/she attempts to use to put down teachers really is proof that public education is not respected as it should be.
Yet I will respond by saying that I would teach that person’s student if that was the case.
But first, I might ask this person if he/she would be willing to become a long-term substitute teacher in an underfunded school where many in the student population are affected by poverty and then have his/her name attached to the test scores.
Then I will just carry on – teaching.