What Leah speaks about sounds like such hard work for teachers! Hard work that seems to have no end. A teacher will have to continue re-visiting their assumptions, challenge their own perceptions of the world and continue to find ways of making what is unconscious, conscious. Damn hard work!
This wasn’t what I encountered or even thought about when I first started teaching in 1990 and it certainly is not the kind of hard work I planned to be doing today.
But these are my thoughts. These are not the thoughts expressed by Seth Mazibuko (the youngest member of the committee that organized the Soweto March) when we invited him to address a room full of principals and educators in Durban last year. He told the school leaders and educators in the room that what is required in our education spaces are educators who are prepared to do the hard work required to offer all South Africa’s children a place to belong and flourish. He said we must do the hard work because our children deserve it.
He didn’t stop there, however. He told the educators that if they were not prepared to do the hard work they should do the honourable thing and hand in their letter of resignation. He offered to collect it immediately and drop it off at the Education Department the very next morning!
I agree with Mr Mazibuko. Our children deserve the hard work that’s is necessary to transform our schools. I agree with Leah that the work will be ongoing.
Are you prepared to do the hard work?