Monday, August 15, 2016
Don't Be A Dropout!
It's with a heavy heart that I once again say farewell to the hazy lazy days of summer and gird my loins for another year of secondary education. I've been teaching for three decades and for most of that time, I worked pretty much all year long, teaching in the summers as well as regular terms. But in more recent times, I've been without full-time summer teaching duties, and I have to say that I rather enjoy these days of relative leisure. As I approach my sixth decade on this planet my bones demand more and more balm from the rigors of that danged gravity.
Truth told, I am in a very enviable position as I am at this stage of my career able to retire pretty much whenever I choose to make that move. My wife's sometimes fragile health makes that an attractive option as I never know when I will be needed to help her more with her day to day activities. But by and large we still motor through the days, and today I will motor to my school for the obligatory opening day ceremonies such as they are in all their typical repetitive drudgery.
Teaching high school students can be a lot of fun on its best days, but on its worst it can be a challenge of no small significance. Modern students are no more inclined to harken to the words of the poets of yore than were their predecessors of decades gone by, but it's no less important that they do so. I often think that the rise of a demagogue like Donald Trump is a profound failure of the educational system, and so I feel now more than ever a need to sally forth and try to make things just a bit better.
Summer is gone, but the autumn beckons. School is most certainly open. It's time to drop back in.