Education in America is not a popular topic. It’s almost become a political issue while the most important aspect — the education of our children — has become an after thought.
There is so much blame being thrown around for what is perceived to be a poor system: there isn’t enough money being spent; there needs to be better teachers, more strenuous curriculum and the list goes on seemingly forever. Are they all valid points? Perhaps. I don’t know and for the purpose of this column, I don’t really care.
This column isn’t about the politics of education, so let’s take the next few paragraphs off from that endless debate. I hear all the criticism but I never see any of the praise.
Well, I’m thankful and I’m going to break the norm of reality, and actually hand out some well deserved praise.
I have a 5-year-old son who is in his third year of preschool and has already had four preschool teachers. Yes, that’s not a typo, four in three years. My wife and I have not had the best of luck with his preschool teachers. In fact, most of their attitudes have been so cavalier, that I usually let my wife deal with them so I don’t end up saying something I know I probably wouldn’t regret but I’m sure would get me in trouble (I’m sure I don’t have to say by who).
So, after the last semester, we switched my son to a new preschool program after he completely hated the one he was attending. He seemed miserable every day after school, which just tore us up.
He has been attending this new program since January. His attitude has already improved toward school, which was the first positive thing we noticed. However, shortly after he started attending, our son started telling us the things he had been learning and started asking us very attentive questions. The progress he has made in a few short weeks has been remarkable.
Then Thursday, he went on a field trip to the Ashland Highlands Museum. I attended as a parent chaperone. I stood in the back and watched him as he listened to the tour guide, did exactly what he was told and had a blast while he was learning.
I was amazed at his transformation from last semester — hating preschool — to this semester. It’s a difference from night and day. I’ve also started getting to know his teacher Brianna Crump as I drop him off every morning. I told her that she has done wonders for Dawson and from what I saw with everyone else at the museum, she has an infinite amount of patience.
If you have a child who has a teacher who has had a positive influence on them, or if you’re still in school and you’ve been impacted by a teacher who constantly brings out the best in you, don’t hesitate to tell them thank you and that you appreciate everything they do for you.
There is enough negative connotations floating around toward teachers already, a few positive words can really be inspiring. So to Mrs. Crump and her helper Mrs. Crystal, my wife and I thank you for everything you have done for Dawson.
Reach Chris Slone at 740-353-3101, ext 1930, or on Twitter @crslone.