Monday, January 9, 2017

A Teacher No Longer Able To Lie To Her Students

I very much recommend this essay from Chaitali Chin in Catapult. In it she relates to why she has had to finally, for good, give up teaching.

I have reason to be able to relate to the difficulties she describes here, not only because both of my sisters have been involved in lower school education for a good portion of their adult lives (hearing for years all of the, usually money related, shit required of them to deal with that had very little to do with actually getting kids involved in learning), but also because it is so easy to understand her inability any more to disassociate the reality of what is going on now, from a desire to pass on a kind of learning that remains hopeful and optimistic. I was involved with local Democratic politics years ago and, sad to say, I didn't last nearly as long as she did in keeping the faith that this was a way to change.

The one part of this essay, though, that bears emphasis here is this:
We have moved from the age where Paul Goodman wrote about "Growing Up Absurd" to the age where it is now the "Absurdity of Growing Up." And we certainly have a new occupant of the White House, as well as many who supported him, who exemplifies that adage in spades. This is also a significant part of what is not "thoughtful, loving structure."

The thing is, an alternative to Capitalism is possible. An alternative that does away with the idea of "cutthroat competition." We just need to have more and more of us to get together and start talking about it; not only the need of it, but generating a consensus on the specifics of what it should be, and how we go about making it happen. The question then is: will you be a part of that, or you will just sit back in despair and do nothing.

Cover Photo: Photo by Thomas Hawk/flickr

One Life, Going Forward: Why I Quit Teaching in 2016

“Like most people in education, I wanted to make a difference.”
By Chaitali Sen
Jan 04, 2017