Time for public schools to change course

The time to teach is now.

After the horror in Newtown, are we finally ready to take a moment and realize that our public schools are not little test prep factories designed to produce human capital for the American economic machine?

Rather, our public schools are the places in our communities where our children go every day to learn how to be better human beings.

And if this is true, then those of us entrusted with the noble task of creating safe learning environments and educating our children must immediately change course.

Tomorrow we walk into our classrooms and reclaim our positions as teachers.

No more corporate education reform. No more accountability. No more high stakes testing. No more data driven instruction. No more teacher evaluations tied to student test scores. No more Pearson. No more Common Core. No more charter schools.

No more money changers in our temples.

We aren’t leaving any children behind, and we aren’t racing to the top.

We are responsible for developing relationships with children that help them become engaged citizens that practice compassion.

We will not be told or forced to do anything that does not promote human connections and expressions of love.

Our children have suffered enough.

Our jobs require us to nurture children and to guide them on a mission where they are committed to eliminating societal and politically induced suffering.

Some say evil visited Newtown. I don’t necessarily believe in evil. Evil is typically a condition of suffering. Let’s start easing the suffering.

Let’s start tomorrow committed to loving our children and teaching them how to love.

Tomorrow, we teach again.

Timothy D. Slekar