“55% of educators are thinking about leaving the profession earlier than they had planned, according to a National Education Association (NEA) survey of its members released in February. This represents a significant increase from 37% in August and is true for educators regardless of age or years teaching, driving buses, or serving meals to students.”
Let that sink in.
As parents, we know what the last three years have been like. So, imagine being an educator. No – imagine being an educator AND a parent.
It seems like there is nothing we can do, but as a former educator and school administrator, there is something that most parents/caregivers can do. I have a list of things you can consider doing that make teaching our children (be it in the classroom, the lunchroom, the library, the bus, or any school situation) easier.
- Keep sick kids home.
- Ask teachers what they need in their classrooms.
- Be kind and teach your children to be kind.
- Get involved.
- Provide solutions, not problems.
Everyone working in education (preschool, childcare, public or private school, charter schools, etc.) deserves patience. They are being asked to go above and beyond in ways that most parents know nothing about. There needs to be more substitutes. There needs to be more resources in general. Increased guilt to show up and not take time off to care for themselves or their children and families is crippling teachers. All while being asked to help our kids “make up” for perceived lost academic gains during COVID-19.
Maybe our children did lose academic gains, but if so – all kids did. Instead of being critical, be inquisitive and ask what interventions are being done and what YOU can do at home.
Let’s not put all of this on the backs of those in education. We experienced a collective trauma, and we all need to take responsibility in moving forward.