We are considering officially recognizing your vocation as a profession. We realize that you have all felt that what you do has always been a profession, but honestly, we at the Society of True Professionals have had some abiding concerns about the way you conduct yourselves on a day-to-day basis, and hence have withheld certification for a number of decades. Nonetheless, we are prepared to reconsider your status as ‘soft professionals’ if the following conditions are met by all of you in a consistent and meaningful manner:
- Do not allow your moods / personal issues / fatigue to influence how you engage with one another or with your students. We feel that many of you behave worse than children in this regard. If you want to be treated as professionals, then act like professionals.
- If you have a problem with a colleague, sort it out like rational adults. Shouting / sulking and / or running off to tell the boss makes you seem churlish and juvenile.
- If you have a problem with a student, remember who the adult is in the situation and act to solve the problem constructively.
- Do not engage in rumor-mongering about any of your colleagues or students.
- Those of you who consider your close and open friendship with your students to be a good thing need to seriously reconsider your approach.
- You need to devote at least 10 hours per month towards improving and updating your skills.
- You should share and collaborate with your colleagues. A child’s education is not a competition, it is a team effort. True professionals have known for a long time that collaboration enriches all of our practices.
- You must not complain that you ‘never have enough time’ – especially when you consistently tell your students who say the same thing that they should practise ‘time-management skills’. You have months of free holiday time. Use it.
- You will be polite, helpful and engaged with the parents of the students you teach.
- You will not judge kids on what you think their IQ is or what their ‘potential’ might be. If you do not know anything about the science of intelligence, please do some research.
- Ensure that you are well prepared. Just because you can get away with doing things at the last-minute doesn’t mean you should.
That is all. Satisfy these guidelines and we will grant you the status of ‘full professionals’.
Until then, stop nagging.
The Society of True Professionals