Wednesday, December 28, 2016

"You Are a Super-Hero!" (Special Guest Post)

Hello, colleague.  I hope you, like me, sometimes come across a reading that stops you in your tracks. I was surprised, wowed, pleased . . . you name it, by this energetic, empathetic, and encouraging essay I came across in our Michigan Education Association magazine, Voice (December 2016). It's by Bill Triolet, teacher and union local president at South Redford district, a stone's throw from my hometown of Farmington. I contacted Bill about posting his words here and within a couple of hours he responded most positively and then sent me his essay, "For Days You're Feeling Low."

As we are at a de facto mid-point of the school year, and at the start of a new calendar year, these words reach us with very good timing. With no further ado, here's Bill in his own write, © 2016, all rights retained by the author. Enjoy!

This year will be starting my 20th year teaching in South Redford, and my 10th year as a [union] local president. I would be lying if I said there weren’t times when I was frustrated, disenchanted, or just plain depressed over the direction public education moves, how the government treats us, or my inability to reach a student.  I can’t help but wonder sometimes, “Why am I doing this?”

But then something always brings me back to the most important reason I come back year after year - really the only reason that matters:

The kids.

Recently a student I had back in 2007 sent me an email.  In it he recounted some fond memories he had of my classroom, then concluded with this: