Defending the Teaching Profession

The teaching profession has a bad rep. Based on a number of comments and stories I hear, somehow teachers are thought to be lazy, uncaring, and mediocre-performers at best. The most frequent comment is that teachers have it “easy” with short work hours from 8:30am to 3:30pm, extra days off throughout the year, and two months off at summer. While holding back my exasperation, I respond with two questions: 1. Do you know any teachers? and 2. Have you ever had to stand-up and actually teach a class of kids for as little as an hour? The response to the latter is usually “No” and to the former is either “No” or “Yes, but that person hates teaching.” It’s nice to see people have well-informed opinions. Without a doubt there are some lousy teachers out there. But let’s agree that the same can be said about every job – restaurant owner, doctor, janitor, project manager, salesperson, lawyer, CEO. So how is it that one job is so poorly regarded on the whole?