With attacks on public education mounting, and education “experts” sharing their views from every soapbox, it’s time to let the public know exactly what goes on in our classrooms – and what our work really entails. It’s time for the NJEA “Teacher for a Day” program to sprout up in as many local associations as possible, and we have all the resources locals need to do so.
Teacher for a Day is a program that allows individuals from the community become guest teachers and experience an entire school day. Under the watchful eye of a regular classroom teacher, guest teachers perform all the duties a teacher would do in a normal day—teaching class, performing lunch and hall duty, recess supervision—in order to “walk a mile” in educator’s shoes. It’s a fun, easy, and eye-opening way to have participants learn first-hand the challenges of teaching.
Since most of the public have not been in a classroom in years, they simply don’t understand what today’s schools are all about. Teaching is not—nor was it ever—the “cushy job” a lot of people think it is, and there is no better way to show this than to let the public try it for themselves. This program has proven to work to build positive support for school employees, students, and public schools alike.
And while it’s true that Teacher for a Day successfully works to debunk the myths about teaching as a “cushy job”, there is so much more your local can gain from hosting a Teacher for a Day event. By bringing public figures and members of the community into the schools and having them witness the real-life, everyday educational environment, we open up the lines of communication and begin to have meaningful discussions on how we can all work together to keep New Jersey’s schools the best in the nation.
If your local is interested in hosting a Teacher for a Day event in your school district, simply visit our Teacher for a Day page and submit a request for a program binder. Once you have a chance to review it, contact us about setting up a date.
What’s the best part? Teacher for a Day is a PRIDE-approved grant project. Talk to your UniServ on how to fill out an application.