A friend of mine, who teaches high school, sent me a message a while ago about Professional Development days.
As it turns out, those PD days that we loved as kids, because they meant a day off, do not carry quite the same lustre for teachers. No, instead the teachers use that opportunity to develop their professional skills.
So far, so good. Self-improvement, continuing education, dedicated time devoted to development — I’m all for that.
Then I read the list of professional development activities that were available to choose from:
1. Having your dreams interpreted
2. Going for a run in the community
3. Playing co-ed Volleyball
4. Participating in a Yoga class
5. Fitness with an exercise ball
6, Scrapbooking (small fee required)
8. Basketball tips and workout
I need to ask you to ponder that for just a minute.
Of all the skills imaginable that a professional teacher would want to or might need to hone… would dream interpretation be at the top of your list? Proper exercise ball technique? I have no problem with these things as hobbies, or interests, or electives — but this is what teachers are given as their professional development?
If I knew my high school teacher was spending a Friday afternoon boning up on card-making, one of two things would happen: I would become deeply afraid of him or her; or I would become completely unable to look them in the eye without wincing. It might even be a combination of those two.
I feel for teachers. I really do. It would take a far braver person than I to face a high school class if I were armed with naught but mad yoga skills.