There was a time when teachers could be true romantics, teaching with a passion, energy and artistry that would inspire the future. Now, sadly, we have all fallen into the abyss by becoming enlightened technicians delivering standardized tests.

Recently, I, with my colleagues, delivered the ACT to every junior and senior in my high school. Countless classroom hours had been expended on taking and passing “the test.” And even more hours expended on meetings preparing the teacher to give the test.

On that very same morning, my twin boys in the fourth grade were taking the PARCC test. Before school, one was too nervous to eat, the other trying to eat twice as much because he was told to eat a “doubly good breakfast.”

ACT, PARCC, Plan and Explore tests: None of these make the road more beautiful for the student. None of these tests make the sunset more brilliant. None of these tests instill a passion and enthusiasm for lifelong learning that education should do.

As teachers, we should not be made to be mere technicians to someone else’s political agenda. Teachers should be encouraged to be bold, be brave and be daring. Teachers should be poets.

John Griffitt

high school history teacher

Denham Springs