‘Parents Are The Problem’ Retired Teacher’s Letter is Praised By Hundreds – Do You Agree?

‘Parents Are The Problem’ Retired Teacher’s Letter is Praised By Hundreds – Do You Agree?

Most people can agree on the value of education, especially for children. But despite holding such a herald position, teachers are often overworked and underpaid. Many enter the field excited and passionate about teaching the next generation, but nowadays, many leave the profession, disillusioned and burned out. They face many different struggles, and some blame their burnout on one reason or another. But a common complaint centers on the student’s parents. In 2017, a retired teacher published an opinion piece in a newspaper explaining her grievances in the classroom, and ever since its publication, it has been going viral online. The article’s reliability seems to ring true for many struggling teachers today.

“Parents are the problem”

Father Helping Two Daughters Sitting At Table Doing Homework
Credit: Shutterstock

Lisa Roberson penned this letter in the Augusta Chronicle, and her words continue to spark debate about whether parents or teachers are to blame for the issues with the education system. After the pandemic, virtual classes, and students unused to a typical school setting, Roberson’s piece may carry even more weight.

As a retired teacher, I am sick of people who know nothing about public schools or have not been in a classroom recently deciding how to fix our education system,” she begins. “The teachers are not the problem! Parents are the problem!”

Why Lisa thinks “Parents are the problem”

Mother and daughter doing homework learning to calculate
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She explains that parents are not preparing their kids to learn. “They are not teaching their children  manners, respect, or even a general knowledge of how to get along with others. The children come to school in shoes that cost more than the teacher’s entire outfit, but have no pencil or paper. Who provides them? The teachers often provide them out of their own pockets,” she said, referring to how teachers have to use their own money to supply and decorate their classrooms. “When you look at schools that are ‘failing,’ look at the parents and students. Do parents come to parent nights? Do they talk with the teachers regularly?

She asks if parents ensure their children come to school with the required supples and do their homework regularly. “…Do the students listen in class, or are they the sources of class disruptions? When you look at these factors, you will see that it is not schools that are failing but the parents,” she concludes. “Teachers cannot do their jobs and the parents’ job. Until parents step up and do their job, nothing is going to get better![1]

The Parent-Teacher Relationship

Happy mother of teenage girl shaking hands with high school principal in a hallway.
Credit: Shutterstock
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