Mediocre Moms Demand “Mother Appreciation Week”
Let me preface this article by stating that I have the utmost respect for teachers. After all, you have to watch my kid (and God knows how awful that is) and twenty-something others every day and make them learn something in the process. It’s a thankless job with crappy pay.
That being said, do we really need an entire “teacher appreciation week”? Mother’s Day is this weekend, and even then we only get a day. Sure teachers have them during school hours, but we have them mornings, evenings, weekends, holidays, made-up holidays, minimum days, in-service days, summer break, winter break, Spring break, Thanksgiving break. How come we only get a day, and a crappy day at that.
You can pretend that you don’t know what I mean, but Mother’s Day is a sham. It’s supposed to be a day that’s for us but it really is just a day of crappy home-made gifts, a shitty breakfast in bed (thankfully my family doesn’t bother), and some hurried last-minute gifts picked out by your hubs. Instead of relaxation, we get to do fun things like get the kids ready for a fancy, expensive brunch that we don’t get to enjoy because we are too busy chasing the kids. (The only people who make out at those are the grandmothers). Thankfully this year my sister and I cleverly crafted a way to avoid some of that nonsense, but it still is a bogus day.
So I digress. Why don’t we get a week? Teachers do. But should they? I feel like teacher appreciation week (TAW) has really become a way for the schools to sucker parents into supplementing the income of teachers. Here’s another gift card for money to spend at Target because the damn school district won’t pay you enough in the first place. It becomes kind of ridiculous. If you don’t believe me, do the math. Let’s say you only get one gift card during the week for $50.00. You probably also gave the teacher the same for Christmas and the end of the year. So that’s $150.00 per teacher. If you have more than one kid, it really starts to add up. It also wouldn’t be bad if it were the only purchases you made for the school all year. But thanks to our declining education system, schools are in bad shape. So every time you turn around, there is another fundraiser with its hand out asking for money. In addition, the schools also now need donations for field trips and school supplies. If I estimated that I have spent at least $1000.00 at my daughter’s school this year, it would be a conservative estimate.
Even worse are the non-monetary things “suggested” during TAW. Does the teacher really need (or even want??) twenty-something bouquets of flowers? I can just imagine the teacher coming home with all that crap and their spouse looking at them like “did you rob a Home Depot?”
There is also something just icky, for lack of a better terminology, about being given a list of what to do for teachers all week. (It’s like when I just tell my husband what I want for Mother’s Day. It’s still appreciated, but it really loses its punch).
The list my daughter got this week wasn’t even that good of a list. One day it was to bring a healthy snack for the teacher. First of all, again I repeat myself, does the teacher really want twenty apples? I hope he or she knows how to make a pie. But second, and more importantly, a healthy snack??? It’s bad enough that schools have put the kibosh on sugary snacks for kids but to make teachers suffer??? That’s just mean. And kind of moronic. I am so sure at 2p.m. when the teacher needs a sugar rush he or she is really going to appreciate taking a bite out of that delicious apple. The least they could do is let us get them candy bars. (I still gave a gift card to See’s Candy….I’m not a monster, you know).
I guess I just feel like the whole thing is frivolous and gaudy, in the same way the rest of parenting has become. “Look at what so-and-so brought the teacher!” It’s just another photo op, and not something that comes from the heart. You know what teachers really want to be appreciated? The same thing that mothers want but don’t get on mother’s day: a paid day off.
I am mediocre mom!
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