Teacher Qualifications - The Jose Vilson

Teacher Qualifications

by Jose Vilson on April 25, 2009

in Jose

Prepare to sacrifice 3/4ths of your day and your life to the world’s oldest profession
Where the other fourth you’re wondering where the other 3/4ths went
In a permanent classroom where your first name no longer means much
In the hallway where everyone’s business becomes yours
In the staircase where you can be yourself but not really
In the home wondering where the bottom of the pile of papers lies
In the street where you become your own personal public relations rep
In the professional development meeting where acronyms and synonyms get flung with an understanding that no one really understands
Political demands and children’s actual needs meet in a crossroad
Push pressure points to both sides of that fork
Enough pressure to crush rocks,
But instead of building jewels, it creates jade
While outsiders perceive this profession as a game of spades
Takes a true master of cards to keep a full deck
When a tad bit of respect is paramount, tantamount
To success in this job
Prepare yourself for the drama, the broken hearts in class,
The bottomless pit of socio-emotio-academical deficiencies
Wave goodbye to sleep, to sleep, to sleep
To subjectivity and absolute autonomy
But most importantly, prepare yourself for the inevitability
Of a transformation process in which you learn more than your students do
Regardless of whether your suck or not
Develop standards higher than you’ve ever stretched your arms to
Measure your self-worth in less customary terms
In 90s instead of degrees
In hands raised instead of feet
In steps up instead of salary steps
In percentage of students finding positive success rather than the range of scores accumulated from a state test everyone’s pressured to take
The same pressure jades are made from
And the same pressure real diamonds pop from too
The type whose teacher qualifications can’t be put in a rubric
Whose students were right about from the moment they sat down in that classroom
And said, “I really need your help. And I’m ready to learn.”

Jose Vilson

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Miss Eyre April 26, 2009 at 10:41 am

This is AMAZING, Jose. So true. I love it.

Reply

Jose April 26, 2009 at 12:16 pm

Thank you. I mean that.

Reply

NYC Educator April 26, 2009 at 2:31 pm

I love it too, but the reference to the world’s oldest profession troubles me. That’s generally got another meaning.

Reply

Jose April 26, 2009 at 4:38 pm

I understand where you’re coming from. Maybe I need to clarify that. Or redefine this whole “world’s oldest profession” thing.

Reply

Sarah Cannon April 27, 2009 at 9:58 pm

Wow. This is the kick in the pants I needed tonight. Thanks.

Reply

Jose April 28, 2009 at 8:02 pm

Apparently, it’s what I do best :-).

Reply

Jonathan May 9, 2009 at 7:40 pm

That’s alright. Three quarters, huh?

Reply

Jose May 10, 2009 at 11:53 am

Whereas the other 1/4th is dedicated to sleep … I hope.

Reply

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