My wife is a teacher

By April 16, 2018Current

TL;DR – A job is just a job?

Image via. And that is not my wife, but I pretty much wish so.

Recently a Singapore teacher’s wife shared about the reality of teaching and this simple post by a loving wife soon turned into a pissing contest on some other site’s Facebook page.

Some started comparing that every job has its own stress while some commented that teachers do have a lot more “benefits”.

It’s strange to see how netizens can look at stories rather differently from its original intention. I mean, I personally believe that Mindy (the original poster) didn’t write the post to say that teachers have the toughest job on earth.

It was never a comparison to begin with.

My wife is a teacher too, by the way. So I pretty much can guess how Mindy felt when she drafted that post.

Yes, a job is just a job and every job is stressful in its own way. Teachers should never feel more entitled to anything just because their jobs are deemed noble as they are responsible for nurturing our future generations. However, the amount of misunderstanding regarding the benefits of being a teacher is enough for me to want to write this response piece.

I’m not here to say that teachers are having it harder but I’m just trying to share that some of these benefits that most people think are benefits ain’t really that big a deal if you look at it from a teacher’s point of view.

I would be so rich if I get a dollar every time someone tells me,

“Teachers very good mah. 4 holidays a year. 2 full months and 2 full weeks leh!”

  • Yeah, so is paying super, super, super peak pricing to go on family holidays. That must be enjoyable. That aside, teachers actually never get to get those “full” holidays you know? How do you think CCA, school events and other important meetings get planned? Also, those in the corporate world get to enjoy flexibility of having and planning annual leave, something teachers don’t have at all.

“Your wife is a teacher sure save a lot of money right? Everyday just eat at the school canteen mah.”

  • If saving money is your goal, so is packing your own lunch to work? I mean, if it’s just about saving money, there are many ways to work around it. After all, here are 13 things you can eat for just $2 in Singapore and you don’t have to be a teacher to enjoy these deals. By the way, teachers don’t get the luxury of enjoy 2-hour lunches the way office workers sometimes do.

“Teachers very good right? School ends so early then can go home and sleep.”

The teaching ends no doubt when the kids go home but does a teacher’s job truly ends here? No. Besides the more obvious things like CCA and marking, they also have the not-so-obvious such as communicating with parents and administrative planning that extend well into the evenings and weekends. Of course, one will say that it’s the same for every job where overtime might be inevitable and I’m not denying that. I’m just saying that it is not true that teachers only work that few hours a day.

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At the end of the day, I suppose I can go on and on but my point is simply, it isn’t about which job is tougher, or which is the toughest job in the world. I’m just trying to say that some of us really have some serious misconceptions regarding the profession.

That’s all.

And I also hope my wife or any teacher actually wouldn’t get in trouble cause of this post.


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Smith Leong

Author Smith Leong

Social Media Trainer @ NTUC | Youth Mentor | Labour Champion | Photographer | Content Creator |

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