Education in America is a Freaking Joke

Education in America is a freaking joke 

I need you to sit down and take note 

As a teacher I can explain to you firsthand 

The foolishness on which I must expand 

About the career I’ve chosen 

About what’s got me groanin’ 

Questioning the choices I’ve made 

That’s brought me to this day 

Where I have to explain 

The craziness in which I am daily forced to partake 

And I say again, 

education in America is a freaking joke 

I don’t mean to rain on or take away your hope 

I just wanted to give you some insight 

To explain to you this plight 

About a system that no longer works 

About a system plagued with anger, frustration, and hurt 

In order to so-called “compete” with other nations 

We’ve sacrificed the very essence of education 

Because it’s all a sick, twisted game 

Where teachers are always the ones left to blame 

Teachers are rated on test scores  

So now their lesson content has become a bore 

Testing is seen as the only way to understand 

The brilliance inside of a boy or girl’s head 

The kids don’t respond because they know it’s no longer about them 

The system’s not set up for them to win 

It serves to just further divide  

A nation that seems set to commit suicide 

No child left behind 

Has left most of them struggling to find 

A place where they belong, to fit in 

A place where they, too, can feel like they can win  

And what about the parents 

Why isn’t this problem apparent 

That their lack of participation 

Only adds to the devastation  

Why do they get to sit back with fingers pointed 

And not realize how much they contribute to this disjointed 

And broken system that makes no sense 

How long will this insanity persist? 

Come on America  

When will we get it right? 

When we will we stand up and fight? 

We need to make the classroom a place 

Where children have the chance to be great 

To see what makes them special and unique 

Without constant fear of a harsh and judgmental critique 

Let’s teach them the lessons and values that they really need 

Now just how to pick between answer choices A ,B ,C, and D 

Help them to discover the talents they possess 

Show them how to turn that into success 

Help them to compete with themselves 

Not just constantly compare them to someone else 

Give the teachers creative freedom 

And trust that they have enough wisdom 

To guide their students to the next level 

Without the stupid tools you use to measure 

How “effective” they are when do what they do 

And by the way, 

Why don’t you let them do what you hired them to do? 

None of us got in this to teach kids how to test 

We got into it to make our students the best 

Versions of themselves they can possibly be 

Showing them all that they can possibly achieve 

If someone would just believe 

In them and inspire them to dream 

Not just worry whether they’re a level 1, 2, or 3. 

Give teachers back the control 

Sit back and just watch what will unfold  

The knowledge that will be shared 

Kids who will know that there’s someone who cares 

Laughter and discussion, giving and taking 

Future leaders and thinkers we will be making. 

I pray that one day I will wake up from this nightmare 

Before I’ve decided that it’s more than I can bare 

Before I give up like so many before me 

Before I decide that teaching isn’t my destiny 

I’m gripping as hard as I can to this hope 

Don’t want to give up, don’t want to have to go 

No longer do I want to feel like it’s so, 

That education in America  

is just  

a freaking joke.  

Michelle D. Robinson 

December 19, 2017 

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