Today, I’m on the Ms. Magazine blog with my piece about teachers as trained professionals! Here’s a taste:
My husband also chose a career in teaching. When people ask us what we do, I answer that I am a high school English teacher and they say, “Oh, how nice.” He, too, answers that he is an English teacher, and they say, “Oh, bless your heart!” The difference in those responses is subtle but significant. My choice is seen as unremarkable because the teaching profession is traditionally dominated by women; a 2007-2008 study found that 76 percent of public school teachers were women. My husband’s choice, however, is a noble one.
Perhaps the association between women and teaching is one reason conservative politicians seem to see teachers as easy targets. Last year, Wisconsin’s Governor Walker made headlines by stripping teachers of their collective bargaining rights and cutting their pay and benefits. He wasn’t the only one; governments in Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio and Tennessee tried to pass similar legislation in 2011. Many states are already in the process of crafting reform to reduce the power of teacher tenure, making it easier to terminate teacher contracts.
Perhaps these politicians are emboldened by the belief that women won’t fight back.
If so, they’re sorely mistaken.
Go read the whole article, share it, and comment!