23rd September 2021
Written by Aaron Sorkin, creator of ‘The West Wing’.
Teaching is exhausting; it requires Herculean feats of strength, mental and physical, and the compassion of the Buddha.
Teaching can be soul-destroying; it requires the wisdom of Solomon and the tolerance of Job.
Teachers can be disrespected, ignored and insulted.
Teacher reviews may be gauged on how popular they are, how many games they play, not on how much they teach or how many students actually pass.
But teachers can also change lives.
That is what makes it worthwhile.
We need to change more lives.
“We need gigantic monumental changes.”
3 thoughts on “Education is everything”
I agree with it (the West Wing blurb) in spirit, BUT…
For starters, “Education” varies widely in quality and basis in reality. It’s also rarely based in critical thinking skills nowadays as opposed to indoctrination.
Change for the sake of change (ie without thought out planning) almost always leads to disaster.
School “Palaces” don’t put the money where it needs to be, but IS stereotypical of big government thinking. It’s the quality of the teachers and the attitude of the student and their family that are the true defining factors. Six figure salaries… All the time in the University of California system; which has some of the highest fees in the country, and provides a VERY mediocre education in MOST cases.
ANYTHING that’s “Incredibly Expensive” for government is incredibly expensive for the public. Government pays for “free” things by taxing money away from the public. Doesn’t matter if it’s college or health care.
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Any excuse for me to quote Aaron Sorkin – if I only had 5% of his talent.
Thanks for your thoughts. You’ve hit the nail on the head when you mentioned ‘the attitude of the student and their family,’ which was the motivation for the blog. I had one online class where the father of a boy was shouting on his phone for the whole two hours, another boy refused to greet me politely, and there was noise and screaming throughout.
I almost quit … instead, I knew I had to make changes, creative and effective changes. A few feathers got ruffled.
Without sounding too idealistic and unrealistic, Vietnam has incredible potential but a change in the mindset has to occur. Before I can teach them English, I have to teach them how to learn, how to behave and that is a monumental task. But when it works … it works.
The six-figure salary is also really appealing but I’ll save that fight for another day.
Take care and stay safe