Over the course of the last week, I've seen two teachers break down and cry. No matter where I turn, teachers are working harder than their students. In the current system, no student is allowed to fail. Indeed a mark less than 50% reflects poorly upon the teacher no matter if the student in question doesn't attend, or attends and works very hard at doing nothing.
Seeing teachers so stressed has once again forced me to reflect on my practice. What it my role as the teacher librarian in the building? For me it has always been Teacher Support Services. As things get hectic (more hectic) in the library, I need to stop and assess what I am doing and what I should be doing.
1. I need to check in with new teachers. I will be taking the time over the next 2 weeks to see where the new teachers are at and how I can make life a little easier.
2. I need to sit down with grey areas students when they are in the library working. All teachers need a little reprieve whether it be from a needy student, a struggling student or a behaviour student.
What's frustrating is that teachers are identifying students who desperately need supports but with all the cutbacks, there simply aren't any supports available to tap into. I'm noticing that teachers are looking to the library for assistance. I find it very hard to say no to my colleagues but I can only do so much. At some point the administrations, the school boards and the government have to realize that teachers are burning out and do something constructive about it.