Just one more reason why I'm grateful to be out of the classroom and no longer teaching in a public school setting.
I have always felt that politics should be kept out of the classroom. Note, I believe all US school children should learn about the political process, but I think the personal politics of a teacher have no place in the classroom. I also expected my students and their parents to treat my classroom as a politically neutral territory. I apparently did a pretty good job at this, because even now a majority of my former students (and the parents of those students) tell me they still have no idea what my political affiliation is.
Next Tuesday the President is planning to give American students a little pep talk, and already some folks are getting all twisted up inside about what the real motives of this speech are.
According to the Tampa Tribune: Jim Greer, chairman of the Florida Republican Party, said the speech would use taxpayer dollars "to spread President Obama's socialist ideology."
But again, according to the Tribune: "The president will speak directly to students around the country about the value of education and the importance of staying in school as part of his effort to dramatically cut the dropout rate," said White House spokeswoman Gannet Tseggai. "This is not a policy speech."
So, working hard, staying in school, and graduating are now part of the socialist manifesto? I don't think this sounds terribly political at all. In fact, it seems - quite possibly - the least political subject a US President could broach with school children. I'm so confused!
I'll admit, I am 24 hours post-surgery and still have codeine in my system, so maybe I'm a little fuzzy on some things, but at least I'm not the only one wondering what's really got people's knickers in a wad. Jen over at Thoughts from a Liberal Mom mulled over this same puzzle, only she was much more articulate (and likely, much less medicated) than I. Thanks Jen!