Posted by: rivettingkatetaylor | September 21, 2008

where’s the respect?

Grownups should have to earn respect from grownups. But adults should command respect from children without question.

A story in the news this morning has made me see red. More than $5 million of ACC funds is being spent treating teachers hurt in the classroom. One principal was quoted as saying it reflect a job more akin to crowd control than education “you don’t expect to be spat at or hit when you’re in this job that you thought was about teaching kids”.

Biting my tongue or eating my hat might be an option in years to come when I have two unruly teenagers sulking in their bedrooms, but for now, I expect (and receive) total respect from my kids.

They do not answer back to the teacher (I don’t need to ask to know that) because they love their teachers. They are well behaved at other people’s places because it is expected of them. It just is. They (pretty much) do as they are told at home because they have to. I’m no parenting genius but they’re good kids.

One teacher at our school gets so many snide remarks from one boy they just go over her head now. That’s sad because she’s a wonderful teacher that boy could learn a lot from. When I shake my head at children like him, I just get told it’s all about their home life. It’s nothing compared with what comes their way at home and that’s a sad indictment on today’s society.

On the other hand, we’ve also told children so much about their rights that it has gone too far. What are other people teaching their children when they second-guess the schools and teachers at every turn? Don’t tell my kid to do that, you can’t do this to them.. even the children themselves now chant that to teachers and their parents alike. Have we given them too much freedom? They have so many rights they have forgotten the chain of command in the natural cycle of life? That is, adults know best. Adults are always right (not necessarily, but do as you’re told).

Note here that I am in no way condoning the crap that goes on in many houses with children being abused or made to go without necessities of life (that’s food and shelter as well as hugs and kisses).
I’m talking about having respect for authority.

There’s one parent I know about who pushes (not literally) against her school’s principal at every opportunity. Whether she is right or wrong, all she is teaching her child is to thumb her nose at authority. He’s the boss, it’s his school, if you don’t like it then go somewhere else. She may think she’s teaching her child to stand up for themself, but what will happen when it’s an employer and her Mum’s not at her side? Or a police officer in a heated situation?

Where’s the track – I’ve lost it. Teachers getting hurt by students. It’s disgusting and completely unacceptable. Teachers, nurses, firefighters and police officers should all be given a huge pay rise for what they have to put up with from people (and in recognition for the wonderful work they do).

Would you vote for me if I stood for parliament?

Sarah and Lachlan took a dozen farm fresh eggs to school for their teachers last week. They want to pick flowers to take to their teachers. There’s nothing wrong with sucking up to the teacher. I applaud it. I encourage it. Long live teachers. Hip hip hooray. I certainly wouldn’t want their job.


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