It's probably fair to say that teachers have a lot of opinions that they keep to themselves.
Well, Reddit user littleirishpixie asked teachers to share their unpopular opinions, and there is some unexpected food for thought here:
1. "Kids aren't getting worse per se, but parents definitely are."
2. "My adult, 30-something friends 'stare at a screen all day' significantly more than my high schoolers do. Sure, they like their phones, too, but it's my adult friends who are missing out on moments, while they post hundreds of pictures of their vacation and updating their Facebook statuses hourly. The teenagers understand their limits."
3. "I don't believe in rewarding students with prizes for good behavior. After three years of bribing students to act right — which didn't work — it finally clicked when a student asked, 'What do I get for behaving?' So I responded, 'Nothing, that's an expectation. If you perform beyond my expectations, then you deserve something."
"I see other teachers rewarding the kids with chocolate and lollipops, and it's such a bad habit to get them into. My students behave because that's what we expect of everyone in society. I'm trying to teach them what it is to have long-term goals, not just short bursts that lead to rewards."
4. "I don't think this generation of kids is lazy, selfish, and lacks responsibility. They are empathetic, nonjudgmental, and they work really hard when they feel like something matters."
"This is my 15th year teaching, and compared to when I first started, the kids are much kinder and tolerant than people make them out to be. I think the internet has expanded what 'normal' is, and while sometimes some of them still get stuck in their own echo chambers, most of them don’t."
5. "It's a lot more trouble to fail your kid than to pass them."
6. "There are some names that I've noticed that come with a certain behavior trend. Like how every Henry I've met so far is very excitable and distracted, which is funny because that's my dog's name...and he behaves the same way."
7. "Yes, your kid lies just like any other kid. Get over it."
8. "Not every kid is cut out for college, and it's not an indictment of you or your parenting."
"We can pretty much already tell who is going to be a college dropout, and who will never make it in in the first place. And there are many fulfilling careers out there that don't require college right away — by helping your child into one of them, you'll put them on a positive track to succeed the rest of their life."
9. "My unpopular opinion is that our perks are actually awesome! I get every major holiday off, one week for Thanksgiving, two weeks at Christmas, a week for spring break, and two months off during the summer. I teach a subject that I'm passionate about, and I never take work home with me unless I want to."
"I totally agree! I love this profession and am always excited for school to start, and I often feel guilty for actually being happy."
10. "Kids these days aren't allowed to fail enough, and that's hurting them."
11. "Some kids are just tough to like. Doesn't mean we don't still give them a quality education, but we certainly aren't sad when they leave the room."
12. "This generation is not the most 'tech-savvy.' Most of them can't even solve simple problems by themselves. I've actually heard, 'Save? Where's that?' They know how to point and click — that's it."
13. "Parents are signing their kids up for too many activities. I get so many parents who say, 'My daughter really wants to be on the volleyball team, but she will have to miss every Monday because she's dedicated to her swim team, every other Wednesday because she's dedicated to cheerleading, every Thursday after the third week of the season because she's dedicated to her student council position, and a few Fridays because she's dedicated to her work at the animal shelter. Then you meet the kid, and she doesn't really care about any of it."
14. "Some of us teachers are honestly just not fit for the job. They're not terrible people, and they may even like kids, but they're just ineffective and flying under the radar making the rest of us look bad."
15. "I can't make students want an education. If they don't want to show up or try, then I'll focus my attention on the ones that do."
Some responses have been edited for length and clarity.