As we approach the 2017-2018 school year, there are four basic needs that teachers require to be successful. These four needs are summed up in the acronym S.U.R.E.
Support – In a recent survey, teachers were asked to list their most important needs to be successful from the school district, administrators, parents and colleagues. Every teacher responded with the same answer, support. When the teachers were asked to elaborate, the responses were that they needed support with the following: 1) classroom management; 2) dealing with the social emotional needs of our students; 3) content knowledge; 4) differentiated instructional strategies; and most importantly 5) support from the principal.
Understanding – It is extremely important for teachers to be understood. First we need to understand that they are humans and would like to be viewed that way. Teachers want an understanding that they have feelings and at times may need a break, an understanding of the demands of the job (finding time to use the restroom can even be a challenge), and most importantly an understanding that they are not perfect.
Respect – There was a time when teaching was one of the most respected professions. Unfortunately, this is not the case today. Respect is and should be required from students, parents, administrators, and all stakeholders.
Expectations- In an era of increased accountability, there are high expectations placed on teachers to improve test scores. These high expectations to achieve should not solely be placed on the teacher alone. These expectations should also be placed on students by their parents, parents to be more involved, and on the instructional coaches and support staff by the principal. In addition, everyone at the district office should have high expectations placed upon them as well, as it’s their responsibility to provide each and every school with everything needed to be successful.
In conclusion, teaching is the profession that’s responsible for all other professions and a teacher should be viewed as royalty. Teachers sacrifice their own families for their students; they neglect their health to ensure that they are there for their students, and are required to deal with every social emotional concern of as many as 30 students a day. Therefore, it is imperative that teachers are supported, understood, respected, and the high expectations placed upon them are shared by all in order for this school year to be successful. When it’s all said and done, a teacher just wants to be SURE.