Originally published in The Education Liberator, Vol. 2, No. 4, May 1996
43 years a teacher, now wants separation
Suffice it to say Eva Rosenbaum never went on strike.
When she started teaching in 1923 for $90 a month in a one-room schoolhouse in Promontory, Utah, teachers didn't smoke, drink, wear jeans to class, or teach first-graders to guess at words. And they didn't demand national health care or the transformation of Thanksgiving into a celebration of "diversity."
"We were looked up to," the 92-year-old Fresno resident recalls. She says in her 43 years of teaching primary grades in three states, she was often "overloaded" with cookies, pies, and all manner of gifts from appreciative parents and students. "They would even stand up when we came into a room," she remembers. Mrs. Rosenbaum laments that the teaching profession is not universally held in the same high esteem it once was.
Though there are still many excellent teachers, Mrs. Rosenbaum believes, "We need to go back to the basics — the three R's, and especially phonics," she says.
She's also miffed at the many government-generated "forms and instructions" teachers are forced to deal with. "They want their forms filled out in triplicate," she says, "and they want it yesterday."
Mrs. Rosenbaum greatly admires the work of the Separation Alliance, but believes that "it's going to take a while" to achieve the goal of separating school and state.
Alliance for the Separation of School & State. Permission is granted to freely distribute this article as long as this copyright notice is included in its entirety.
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