Students share anonymous confessions


Courtesy of Guardian Liberty Voice

Students at Lindale High School were asked to finish the phrase “I Wish My Teacher Knew…” The responses gathered can be seen below.

With the Senate Committee’s confirmation of presumptive Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, change is soon to follow. However, while teachers and administrators focus on Secretary DeVos’ school-choice policy, the real problem will continue to get suppressed – personal issues the students struggle with from day-to-day. For some, getting an “A” may be the end goal, but, for others, their struggles are more serious.

With this in mind, a third-grade teacher from Denver, Kyle Schwartz, offered to her students the chance to finish the sentence, “I wish my teacher knew…” and was astounded by what she discovered beneath the facade that some students put on every day. This incentivized schools across the nation to provide an outlet for students to express their issues on a fully anonymous platform. Students at Lindale were asked the same question, and their responses were equally as surprising. In fact, 78% of responders described how much they struggle personally with school, home and the balance of both, while only 22% of responders noted something positive.

“[I wish my teacher knew] that I am not happy,” a student said. “I am here eight hours a day and no one notices how bad[ly] I am struggling. It really sucks that a teacher can’t see that the kid in front of them is deeply hurt. Hopefully that will change in the future.”

However, the issues covered were not solely related to school. Some responders noted more personal, familial issues.

“My dad is a recovering drug addict.”

“I wish my teachers knew that for the past seven months I’ve been on my own having to do everything I can just to go to school, because my mother kicked me out. I wish they knew how hard it’s been trying to find a job because I don’t have my social security card or a state ID. I wish they knew how hard it’s been for me because my mother told me she hated me before leaving me on the side of the road. I wish they understood how hard it has been and how much pain it has caused me.”

Some responders then took to describing the problems they face concerning their mental well-being. These responses included descriptions of depression and other similar issues.

“How much it takes me to put a smile on my face.”

“I am not quiet, I just feel like I don’t have anything important to say at the moment.”

“That sometimes I really struggle and I just need a break,” a student said. “That sometimes I don’t get the subject, but I’m too scared to speak up. Sometimes I shake, and get really scared. I wish they knew that I get anxiety over the craziest smallest things.”

Scattered around the myriad of sad confessions were sparse instances of positivity. Some students took the opportunity to respond with more kind, light-hearted manner. They praised teachers and offered condolences to those going through struggles.

“That I’m very passionate about her art class,” a student said. “I’m hoping to pursue it as a career because of her.”

“I wish my teachers knew that they make me feel like I actually matter,” a student said. “I wish they knew how much they’ve influenced me and how thankful I am to have such great people in my life.”

“How much I truly like their class,” another said. “They think that just because one person doesn’t like them that anyone else doesn’t either.”

“That I steal his pens everyday without him noticing.”

The responses gathered from students provide a way to look into the problems they face. However, the fact that these problems exist ought to signify that some change needs to occur. This should bring awareness to issues that students commonly – and shouldn’t have to – face.