Sunday, February 20, 2011


A colleague told me she heard two radio commentators talking about how old Gertrude gets to keep her job while poor little Tweenies, the young dedicated, caring teachers will lose theirs, due to budget cuts.

Let me tell you about the Gertrudes in my school. Saturday, little white haired Gertrude #1 spent the entire day with a group of kids getting ready for a competition.  Guess what, she didn't get paid for her time.  Gertrude #2 gave up her Saturday to watch the JROTC exhibition to support the students in the school.  Gertudes #4, #5, #6 and #7 spent a 12 hour day with their cadets. There were no Ms. Tweenies around.  Gertrude #8 spends almost all her non teaching periods helping students, even sitting on the floor with them.

The Gertrudes are the ones helping the Tweenies, sharing their knowledge of classroom management and curriculum.  They are sharing the tricks of the trade they have learned and perfected and things that can only be learned after years of classroom experience.  There are Gertrudes that use the Smart Board and use a computer and are learning all the technology the 21st century has to offer.

Believe it or not, an old person can be a good, caring teacher.  Old Gertrude is a teacher of merit.  It is against the law to discriminate against any individual because of age, unless of course that person is an aging teacher.


ASTRAKA said...


have taught your mother and or father and now they are teaching you! They are passionate in what they do in practice not in theory!

Anonymous said...

There are 2 teachers in the school that I substitute in on LI who still teach at 65 and older. I think its great and I wish more school districts exemplify this all over the country.

Yes, they have learned to use a Smartboard and are aware of the new techniques and strategies to stay current in education.

However, most school systems are not like the district I sub for.

Anonymous said...

I am a sort of a younger teacher (not really) and there are tons of younger teachers who I want to smack silly for being so arrogant and smug. Especially some from 1 particular building.

ChiTown Girl said...

From one Gertrude to another -
sing it, Sista!!

Chaz said...

There is nothing like experience and the Gertrudes have the experience.

Anonymous said...

Hey I know of a special education teacher on LI who retired at age 70. She does not look a day over 50.

Anonymous said...

A Gertrude that I know spent 50 years in the system. Although many of her fellow teachers regarded her as kind of "nutty," she really connected with the kids. Yes,she was set in her ways but she still had the ability to inspire the students. Oh hell, I was only in the system for 5 years and I was a Gertrude when I started. As The Byrds said, I was so much older then, I'm younger than that now. Go Gertrude!