Dear Teachers, A Note From Greg Beeler, A Parent

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Written By: Robyn Shulman, with guest, Greg Beeler.

If you happened to miss a very interesting post, “Dear Teachers,” written by Greg Beeler of Guydelines, please read below and share your thoughts. Greg is a parent who writes about life, love, and different things that happen to him in everyday life (mostly his personal life). I caught his post on Facebook and found it interesting. Please note, Greg wrote this post after the tragedy in Newtown, thus the referral to the arms debate. His message is not solely focused on the debate, as it is a testament to the many responsibilities teachers have every day, the expectations, and the changes in the roles of parenting. A teacher’s plate is so full already; do we now add arms to the list of responsibilities? This is a question many have found themselves discussing at dinner, in schools, and around town. I found many different messages in this post.

Greg conveys the understanding that effective teachers do so much more than teach information. Many times per day, effective teachers are social workers, coaches, breakfast and lunch providers, parents, guidance counselors, personal tutors, writers, editors, and actors. Many teachers juggle all of these tasks with grace and dignity, and in heart and mind, they want all students to succeed, grow, learn, and most importantly, be safe. An effective teacher is the epitome of the perfect multitasker. 

Greg relays an uncommonly heard unique appreciation, as he provides a message many educators do not hear during the course of their careers. He distinctly communicates how the classroom teacher’s job is not from 8-3, but rather, a never-ending journey filled with hundreds of different responsibilities that go on and on, before school, during school, after school, on the weekends, and yes, even during the summer.

Another issue brought to light is the role of the parent. To clarify, one cannot assume all parents feel this way or expect these responsibilities from their child’s teacher. I believe the tasks mentioned, from a holistic view, are part of the teacher’s role, some are political, and many times teachers are left holding parental responsibilities (again, not all, but some).

Greg’s post received over 100,000 ‘likes’ on Facebook, and has been translated into 7 different languages.

Greg gave me permission to share his work verbatim, and you can subscribe to his Facebook page here: https://www.facebook.com/guydelines

Please note, he does not always write about education, as he covers various topics.

Dear Teachers,

Please come to work early so I can drop my kids off on my way to Starbucks. Please feed them breakfast while they’re there. Make sure it’s healthier than what I offer at home. Also, teach them math & science since we rarely practice those in our house. But, also teach the moral & religious beliefs that they see me not follow. I want you to reward their successes & recognize each child’s abilities. But, make sure they all feel like winners & that no one feels left out. Be on the watch for bullies or troublemakers. Don’t let anyone mistreat anyone else since I don’t have time to find out if my child is the “different” one. Make sure to recognize each student’s individual talents & skills. Tell me what those are during our 10-minute conferences each semester. Love & cherish my children as if they were your own. I’m busy working 50 hour weeks trying to pay for all of our belongings & don’t have the kind of spare time that you do. Also, learn to shoot a gun & bring it to school in order to protect my children. They are my life & I wouldn’t want them to be harmed on your watch. Ensure every child that leaves your classroom is safe, smart, well adjusted, & free of social problems or concerns. I have difficulty parenting my two kids, but you got a degree in this. So, you must be able to handle all 38 students with absolute ease. When you’re done with this list, let me know. I have more ideas on how you can raise my children for me.

Thanks,
A Parent

Do you think this is how most of our society is now? Are parents expecting too much from us? Why or why not?

 

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  • http://www.facebook.com/laura.dawson.5201 Laura Dawson

    When it mentions asking teachers to come to school early, surely its talking about breakfast club..where some children come to school, before the school day starts, therefore ‘early’, and they get offered cereal and porridge etc which are healthy, rather than chocolate spread on toast or other such things which a lot of children seem to eat nowaday. Unfortunately a lot of parents do seem to ‘expect’ a lot of the things Greg mentioned, if you are not one of those parents Heather, then thanks-we wish there were more like you.

  • Tracy

    Honestly, after reading his letter I thought it was meant to be funny. I agree with Heather though, most of the parents I know are actively engaged in their kids’ lives.

  • http://www.facebook.com/writingmother Heather Atton Cook

    I don’t know a single parent who thinks this way. We are engaged in our kids’ lives. If you want specifics… I’ve never asked a teacher to come to school earlier to watch my kids (what?! who does that??), I feed my kids a healthy breakfast (and it happens to be healthier than what’s offered at school), they see me follow my morals and belief system, I know almost everything about my kid … I’m not sure what to think about this post other than I find it kind of patronizing.

    I don’t ask teachers to parent my kids. I ask them to teach them.

    • EduNewsDaily

      Thank you Heather…very happy to see your response as a parent. I think we have a society with unbalanced expectations and the needs are so diverse. I see both sides as a parent and a former teacher (we all have so much on our plates, and teachers have a lot more responsibility now (even more than 5 years ago) due to external and political factors).

    • Linda Copney-Okeke

      Heather, I too agree with you. I am not sure what school system this person comes from, but I spend a lot of time on my kids education. From checking to see if homework is done every night to following up with teachers when they send me a note about my kid’s behavior in school. My goal is to raise well educated good citizens. I parent my kids and expect that teachers take the time to teach them what they need to be academically successful.