Parents can tell a good teacher from a bad one

Well, it must be the start of another school year. I did not figure this out because my kids strapped their backpacks on and headed out the door with their new school clothes on.

Well, it must be the start of another school year.

I did not figure this out because my kids strapped their backpacks on and headed out the door with their new school clothes on.

No, I came to this realization just by picking up my local newspaper.

You see, I have six children and I attended my very first parent-teacher interview in 1991 and every year since then some ill-informed forget-me-not like Dale Stuart writes a letter trying to tell me how spoiled teachers are.

Then, just like clockwork, some teachers whose feelings were hurt — like Chris McCullough and Diane Swainson —enter the fray as cheerleaders for the teaching fraternity to try to tell me how great teachers are.

Again and again, year after year, I hear the same thing.

Diane Swainson’s letter is almost an exact replica of Chris McCullough’s letter, right down to the exclamation points at the end. They both must have been cheerleaders in their younger years.

The two not only insult my intelligence, but the intelligence of every parent in the land.

They honestly believe that we, as parents, are going to judge teachers based on what Stuart says?

I have dealt with teachers directly for almost 20 years and I have met some good ones and some bad ones. Parents know what is going on in the education system and we know the difference between a good teacher and a bad teacher.

We know these things because we are adults and we are exposed to the school system every day.

We certainly do not need Stuart, McCullough and Swainson to tell us what goes on.

All three of their letters come across as childish, arrogant and extremely self-serving. And at the end of the day that is how this debate will be remembered, as an old, tired argument fought by a few adults who thought that they were far more important than they actually were.

Grant Johnson

Red Deer

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