By: Brady Evans
I am not sure I’ve ever talked about my job here on the Every Woman Blog. There’s a few reasons for that.
First – I think Americans over-identify with our careers. One of a stranger’s first questions is always, “So, what do you do?” It is understandable. We’re asked from a very young age what we want to be when we grow up. (How often is that answer actually accurate? I wanted to be either a swimming instructor or a barber – I am neither.) We spend thousands of dollars these days on higher education, and besides the money, we spend years in school under the threat of “you’ll need an education to get a job!”
Second – I love my job. I am thankful that I enjoy it on a daily basis. My days pass quickly and are filled with laughs. But I love coming home more than I love going to work. I love my sweet dog Flo, my delightful horses, my ever-mischievous-cat, and those other two canines that I allow to share Flo’s space (don’t hate me – I chose favorites!). I love my farm chores and I love cooking and writing. I love listening to Cat Stevens and Jackson Browne in the evening and watching the nightly news.
The third reason why I suppose I don’t share too much about my job is that everyone is an expert at my job. Everyone has an opinion of my job. Everyone believes he has the right to evaluate me at my job – even though no one is actually ever there, watching. I guess having a taxpayer-funded job brings those sorts of criticisms and perhaps justifiably so. Still, it is hard having this job and having to sit back and smile while you read social media articles full of opinions with no evidence and clearly little background knowledge regarding the subject at hand.
Have you figured out what I am? I am your kid’s public school teacher. And, as someone once put it, everyone thinks he is an expert on teaching because he’s been a student before. And nearly everyone has an opinion on my job because my salary, meager as it may be, is funded by tax payer monies. And thus, my job and my effectiveness at it is constantly under the lens.
I’m not here to fight about Common Core State Standards because it is hard to fight with people who are uninformed about the topic at hand. I won’t fight with my doctor about the pain medication he recommends for an ankle sprain; I’ll just trust that he’s the informed one and is motivated to do his best work to make me feel better.
And I’m not going to fight about whether or not grammar or cursive should be taught or whether it is “important.” After all, importance is a relative term. Wasn’t Home Economics important to students growing up in the 50s? Can we all agree now that knowing how to prepare a casserole or properly iron a collared shirt is less important nowadays?
But what I’d like you, the ones who criticize your child’s teacher and every move she makes, the ones who post your beefs on Facebook regarding every assignment she sends home and every grade that she enters into the grade book, to know is that we love your kids. We want your kids to be successful. We do our best to do the most for your kids every day. And, most importantly, we are all on the same team.