Every so often I have the rare opportunity to pick up my son from pre-school. I'm greeted by teachers with huge smiles, they all say hello-how's your day. The kids are running around laughing, every so often crying (over a much wanted toy). As we leave, Rowan's teacher comes over with some pictures he drew and gives him a hug, she tells him she'll see him on Friday. The other day I got a phone call that he wasn't feeling very well, and that most of all he wanted to talk to me. So I quickly left and went to get him. It wasn't an emergency, but the teachers knew something was wrong-they are close enough to him to pick up a very small difference in his mood...loving enough to call and tell me.
In High School I hear teachers telling kids to pull up their pants, get off their phones, go to the office.
Where's your homework? They are sick of telling the same kids to put their coats away, irritated that there are more "low" kids in their classes. Kids fighting, girls crying, big circles of boys around the ones who are fighting. Do they know that one kid's mom abandoned him when he was 6 weeks old? Do they know that her dad is an alcoholic? No...that's the counselor's job to find that out. How could they with 130 kids? They barely have time to get to know one.
I think that we are the problem. I don't care how many kids I have, or what I have to teach...I won't ever forget that I have a human being sitting in front of me.