As a teacher, I am on the front lines of education and I’m able to tend to my kids’ social and emotional needs in addition to their academic development. Few people or professions have the exact experience or insight that teachers have. We know that our students are complicated and diverse; they have unique needs that deserve attention the same as any other. As teachers, we work every day to ensure those unique needs are met, and I think it’s time for our politicians to do the same.
My pedagogy on the importance of teacher voice is derived from my upbringing as a child in foster care separated from my parents and siblings. That upbringing helped shape my understanding of words like community, support system, and safety as well as terms like unwanted, rejection, and biases. One of the things that helped me sort through the various emotions that seemed to swallow me at times was my schooling — its stability and structure and all of the proclamations from teachers that I was somebody. I needed to hear this because the rhetoric that I heard in my foster home was constant grumbling that I interpreted then as “you’re not expected to amount to much... continue reading at CT Viewpoints.