In our town, we recently celebrated Teacher Awareness Week. Sadly, it was a quiet time of subdued expression. Within the last year, we have witnessed the death of several teachers who served in the two systems for many years. These are they who committed themselves to a purpose that transcends money, some perceived equation of affluence, and have chosen to interact with young people as mentors.
As one sits and contemplates the events of one's life it is imperative that due diligence be given to those special people who taught us the importance of learning to evaluate data, facts, opportunities, and possibilities. It is uplifting to look back, sometimes a half-century, and recall those teachers who insisted upon excellence when only good had been our target.
In today's society and especially in the arena of education, teachers are expected to meet criteria that have little to do with teaching. They are looked upon as Houdini disciples who can cause problems to vanish with meager help from educational triumvirates that reach into the state and national levels of never-ending demand. The time needed to teach young people to think and learn how to live in group surroundings is wasted in a plethora of demands for useless information about everything from "home-rule" to "site-based" management. The student, in the meantime, is wallowing in the wake of expended energy that has nothing to do with learning.