My Facebook friend Brook, who said I could quote her, recently had this up as her status:
We go into the professional knowing all this and we all have reasons that it's worth it. Those reasons all have names, such as Stephanie, the incredible student I had in third grade who is seeing her dream of going to Howard University manifest itself after years of hard work. She not only makes me proud to be a teacher - I would pay her whole tuition if I was able to because she'll be such an incredible investment. We don't go into this profession to be appreciated, but we also are often not prepared for the amount of blame, ridicule, etc. that we have to deal with.
Brook, it's parents like you that help us keep going. I'm no longer in the classroom but still teaching. Whether or not I ever do go back to the classroom, I will never forget the feeling of going into the last stretch of the school year, with the kids acting crazy, the classrooms overheating because they act like greenhouses, trying to give standardized tests when you want to actually TEACH the kids what they still need to learn because so much of your time has been wasted testing, madly planning field trips and end of the year activities, and dealing with parents who think you should be spending all your energy on their one child. It makes a huge difference to just have this acknowledged, so thank you to everyone who's appreciating their child's teacher. Please know that the teacher loves your child and would do anything for them, even when they're destroying the classroom.