Everyone knows a good teacher. Whether from your own experience in school or from your friend or family group, you know a good teacher. Possibly one of the most tragic results of school board investigations, school curriculum exposures, and even the pandemic, is the demonization of the good teachers—the ones clumped in with all the others pushing LGBTQ agendas, critical race theory, division, over-sexualized reading materials, etc. As hard as it is to be a student in this day and age, it has to be just as hard, or worse, to be a good teacher. So, we’d like to take a moment to show our appreciation for good teachers and offer up some ways we can support the good teachers making real differences in childrens’ lives and education.
What Teachers are Up Against
As people wake up across the U.S. and become aware of just how bad the propaganda from our government and non-elected oligarchs has gotten, teachers have become targets of anger and distrust. “Just teach!” we scream at them, demanding, and rightfully so, that radical agendas, inappropriate materials, and the teachers’ personal lives stay out of schools. But what we don’t hear is the good teachers yelling back “We’re trying!”
Because the truth is, there are far more good teachers than there are bad. There are way more young (and veteran) teachers who just want to teach what they’re passionate about, guide children to brighter futures, mentor young minds into successful young adults, and create engaging learning experiences. That’s it. But they are gridlocked by the handful of bad teachers who believe it their right to essentially kidnap your child and shove their own lives and beliefs down their throats. Like in other social institutions of today, we have a tyranny of the minority plaguing the public education system. But the public school system is not inherently evil, and neither are the teachers.
Just from experience, good teachers have their hands tied by weird and unhelpful school policies, insufficient staff, huge and unrealistic expectations, long hours, no (or very few) breaks, incompetent school boards, unreliable parents, and very little available funds. In short, the uphill battle hits the good teachers hard and makes their already difficult job that much harder. They just want to teach, but even that is hard to do with the few resources and little support they receive.
For parents, it is hard to trust teachers when you hear the horror stories. But the reality is that it’s #NotAllTeachers and, odds are, the teachers at your local schools are the good ones. And they need all the love and support we can throw their way.
How to Support the Good Teachers
If you’re a parent who sends your children to public or private school, or if you just know some good teachers, here are a few ways to support them in their mission.
Whenever you are able, in whatever way you can, volunteer in their classroom. Support their lesson, help keep kids in line, and assist with activities. At the beginning of the school year, find a way to offer your help and become a reliable parent to that teacher.
Most teachers have to decorate and equip their own classrooms, eating into their yearly salaries and placing yet another burden on them. However, with today’s wonderful online shopping market, it’s easy for teachers to make shopping lists of their classroom needs. Ask your favorite teacher if they have one and purchase a few items for them and then spread the word to anyone else who can help.
Attend School Board Meetings
The meetings are where policies, curriculum, and more is discussed. Make your voice heard at these meetings, or write to board members ahead of time, to let them know your support or disapproval of certain policies. Let them know that you are in favor of whatever makes teachers’ lives easier!
Nominate an Exceptional Teacher
To show a little extra love, you can also nominate your favorite good teacher for awards! Like this one from the Department of Education. There are a couple other teacher awards out there, too, so it’s easy to find one that distinguishes a good teacher and all their hard work.
Become a Voice for Teachers
Run for school board, school PTA, district PTA, state PTA, and national PTA. If you have the time, and feel the calling, these are great places to become an advocate for teachers. Talk to local teachers to find out what they need and do you best to make it happen.
If you’re not called to run for a position, you can still voice your concerns to the appropriate administrators: the school district, principals, the superintendent and their cabinet. It’s generally school, district, and state policy that parents don’t agree with—not the teachers themselves. For example, when districts or states say it’s okay to hide a name or pronoun change at school.
Be Involved in Your Kids Education
Backup your teachers by disciplining your kids, encouraging them to be respectful to their teachers, follow school rules, know their schedules, and study hard. Instilling good values into your children makes them good members of society, well-behaved students, and disciplined adults. Good teachers will always appreciate the kind and helpful child who sits still, listens, follows instructions and rules, and behaves respectfully.