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  • Writer's pictureRachel Chin

Here’s what I see in our schools

I have had kids in the public school system of our city for 10 years now.


I have worried every year that the teachers will simply give up, say it’s too hard, say parents expect too much of them, say there are too many students with too many challenges and not enough support.


And yet, every year, the teachers show up. The classrooms are staffed. My children learn.


Every year, my kids impress me with random new topics that they’re now curious about and way more knowledgeable about than I am. They come home telling stories of class disruptions, but also of how the disruption was handled, and why, and how it made them feel. They share with me their friends’ first-hand accounts of Ramadan and Día de Muertos and Hanukkah. They are learning not just academics, but how to problem solve, how to respect others, and how to appreciate all walks of life.


Over the years, my kids have taught me lots of useful things they’ve learned in class, including meditation practices, calming techniques, and the proper use of personal pronouns. While I sometimes struggle to understand the latest youth terminology, I see my children assimilating information in a fluid and natural way that fascinates me.


I still worry, but not as much as I used to. Our experience over the past 10 years at five different schools has been consistent: teachers and school staff truly care about their students. Despite the daily challenge and the heartache that is most certainly involved with these jobs, teachers continue to shine. Every day, they illuminate the path forward for our kids and impart wisdom that transcends textbooks.


Their dedication is indeed a beacon of hope, and I am grateful for it.


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