Cathedral Building

Another Teaching Blog

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U.S. Teachers Spend, On Average, Approximately 1,097 Hours Per Year on (Only) Instruction.

That means approximately 7,663 hours in the year are left unaccounted for.

Let’s assume parents don’t see their kids until 5pm.  This might not be a proper assumption in a world where so many parents have to work two jobs just to make ends meet, but let’s assume.  So, two hours a day, for 6 days a week, for 52 weeks.  That leaves 7,039 hours.

And we’ll be nice and subtract hours that the children are sleeping and aren’t necessarily aware of their surroundings.  Assuming healthy kids, 8 hours of sleep…that leaves 4,119.

Let’s assume those are hours spent around their family.  It’s a faulty assumption I know.  So we’ll adjust again - let’s say the students are also accounted for in the summer by babysitters or summer camp.  Three months, five days a week, 8 to 3 (we already accounted for the hours until five for the whole year with the working-till-five equation), that’s subtracting another 420 hours.  That’s 3,699 hours.

I’m feeling so generous and realistic that I’m going to assume that parents work until seven, which with subtraction and rounding down leaves about 3,000 hours.

So if parents spend nearly three times as much time with their children as teachers do…

Why are teachers expected to be saints with no personal lives or shortcomings while parents can do whatever they’d like and be whatever they are without criticism?

Parents can have sex in the room down the hall.  Parents can watch violent television with their kids playing in the same room.  Parents can drink or smoke.  Parents can cuss.

But teachers, or anyone who works or volunteers with kids, can’t do anything in their private lives without the assumption that it will spill into the classroom.  If a teacher is sexually active the kids will come home talking about orgies.  If a teacher has a same-sex partner the kids will come home talking about sexuality.  If a teacher is spotted in a bar they must be coming in drunk to class.

Someone explain to me why there is such an unfair double-standard.  I’d like to know, so that I can one day be both a teacher and a human being without it leading to scandal.

Filed under education teaching parenting

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