NWA Letters to the Editor
Entitlement grows as issue parents need to overcome
The new school year is here. Students and parents must come to grips with attitudes of entitlement. Parents, teachers, college professors, administrators and employers are all communicating their frustrations related to this issue — how some expect rules that apply to others shouldn’t apply to them, and how there is disregard for rules intended for everyone’s comfort.
Educators are seeing a growing sense of academic entitlement. Students believe assignments and tests should be graded on how hard they’ve worked, not on how well they’ve mastered the material. When students don’t receive the grade they think they deserve they demand a better grade, provoking confrontations. Their feelings of the quality of their work doesn’t match the reality of their performance. Hard work doesn’t necessarily parallel excellence. Sometimes working hard results in an average grade.
Teachers are entitled to having students come to class and on time. They are entitled to respect and students following the rules. Teachers should not have to entertain disruptive or threatening students. Teachers shouldn’t struggle with students to complete assignments or stay off cell phones. Assignments should be turned in on time rather than several weeks late. Teachers are also entitled to having their word respected and having parent and administrative support.
Speaker/author Eric Chester developed a video called the Entitlement Creed. In the video employers share what they are entitled to. Employers state they have good jobs. College students speak about being entitled to good jobs after college because they “deserve” it. The state employers owe them good jobs with decent benefits. They express that they’re entitled to jobs that pay $40,000 to seven figures.
Employers say they’re entitled to workers arriving on time. They say, “If you’re scheduled for 9 a.m. and arrive at 9 a.m., you’re late.” They’re entitled to workers being positive and enthusiastic when approaching the task they are assigned, regardless of what it is or what may have happened to them before arriving to work. While at work employers are entitled to workers acting and speaking in a professional manner. They also expect workers to dress and be groomed in a way that best represents their organization.
Employers are entitled to workers who respect the rules whether they agree with them or not. “Liking the manager is not a condition for following company policy.”
Employers are entitled to the truth. One stated, “If you lie, cheat, steal or hook a buddy up even once, the trust they need to have in you will be forever in question.”
Another employer said, “If you feel we are asking too much then you’re entitled to look for another employer who will not ask these things of you.” The odds of you finding one are not good.
The parallel between education and the qualities employers look for are obvious. Parents and schools must work together to counter attitudes of student entitlement. Outstanding character and work ethic must be imparted because what we allow, we teach. Let’s teach students that good character and work ethic are required.
Commentary on 08/12/2019
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