Generation Z children—those born between 1995 and 2019—have grown up in a society quite different than that of their grandparents. Modern technology and a sense of “instant everything” has dominated homes as well as workplaces and schools. Many children have experienced more screen time than family fun time. Fewer families play board games learning life’s lessons—about winning and losing—and spend less time together on outdoor projects, where there is give and take.
So it comes as no surprise when a retired teacher, Lisa Roberson from Wrens, took to pen a letter to her local paper, The Augusta Chronicle, to express her frustration about what she saw as a cause of some children failing to measure up today. Her letter, published on Feb. 16, 2017, was defending the public school system, which had to take the blame for all the poor outcomes and low standards in a student’s academic life.
The letter she wrote first addressed those who had never been in a school classroom but who were trying to fix the education system.
Secondly, she wanted parents to know that many children lacked manners, showed little respect, and did not cooperate well in the classroom. Shedding even more light on how parents are failing their children, she explained how the school provides pencils and paper to those in class.
She wrote: “The children come to school in shoes that cost more than the teacher’s entire outfit, but have no pencil or paper. Who provides them? The teachers often provide them out of their own pockets.”
The teacher also highlights that problem schools can be the result of overwhelmed teachers trying to cope with both parents’ and students’ failings. The retired teacher points this out clearly in her letter: “When you look at schools that are ‘failing,’ look at the parents and students. Do parents come to parent nights? Do they talk with teachers regularly? Do they make sure their children are prepared by having the necessary supplies? Do they make sure their children do their homework?”
This was posted in the newspaper today !!!
Back to the students’ behavior in class, Ms. Roberson continues her letter by asking parents if they knew and checked their child’s habits in their schoolwork. “Do they have working telephone numbers? Do the students take notes in class? Do they do their homework? Do the students listen in class, or are they the sources of class disruptions?” she further mentioned.
She concluded her letter by stating that the teachers and schools cannot do their job well unless parents have done their job in raising polite, respectful, and hard-working children. Only when everyone does their job well can things change for the better.
She finally left a message for parents, writing: “When you look at these factors, you will see that it is not schools that are failing but the parents. Teachers cannot do their jobs and the parents’ job. Until parent step up and do their job, nothing is going to get better!”
Well, as you can imagine, when this letter was shared by a netizen on social media, it attracted both positive and negative comments.
One social media user agreed, writing: “Absolutely, parents expect teachers-bus drivers etc to teach their little darlings. It starts at home folks-be parents, not friends.” Meanwhile, another defended the parents, writing: “And teachers needs [sic] to stop being so quick to judge a child’s parents you don’t know the real deal.”
While a third wrote: “There are multiple factors that shape a child’s personality. Parents, teachers, friends, TV shows, and the internet. Blaming only one of the factors is just wrong. We need to work together.”
This post has garnered more than a million shares. Indeed, food for thought.