Friday, June 30, 2017

Stressed Out (A Work in Regress) by Matt Prestbury

I get stressed out
Every time they roll a test out
My parents say "go on and do your best now"
My teacher says "go on and do your best now"
But how can I rest now
When I know this test counts
For nothing
But my teacher's firing
Bring in TFA and pay them so much less now
For test scores teachers gets a verbal hosing
And a threat that this "failing" school WILL be closing
If I don't do better
My parents get a letter
Saying that I'll have to go a charter school boasting
Of rigor, rigor, rigor and high test scores
Man I'm so stressed out I can't take anymore
Momma I wanna sing
Naw, I wanna scream
There's no music department
And they fired Mrs. Breem
I wanna run
Naw, I'd rather sit
Cause there's no PE
Since it ain't in the budget
I wanna paint
But I can't
Cause they shrunk the art department until it just ain't
No time for recess
There's only regress
Uniformity abounds
Right down to how we dress
Conformity surrounds
So I guess it's needless
To say
I wanna go my own way
But I can't cause I got another test to take today
So I crawl outta bed
And I take prescription meds
So that I can please my parents
And so they can please the feds
Who just see me as some data
Just some numbers to be crunched
A no name nobody
Headed to be lumped
With a bunch of other nobodys
Who don't count for $%^&
We're just pawns in a game
And I'm physically sick
Sick of this nonsense
And sick of this testing
Nausea and vomiting and headaches cause I'm stressing
Sick of these business folks
Being overbearing
They're a bunch of wolves
Tailored sheeps' clothes they're wearing
They're a bunch of vultures
Extending in their reach
Leave us the &^%$ alone
Let us learn
Let teachers teach
Matt Prestbury is a father of four, a husband, and educator and mentor. He was born and raised in Baltimore, MD, and is a graduate of Baltimore City Public Schools.
Mr. Prestbury has been in the education field for the past 20 years. In addition to teaching, he also has written a children's book, I Want My Daddy To Do It; started a nonprofit, Focused on Fatherhood; and created the Facebook group, Black Fathers. His passion for fatherhood and family continuously fuels his drive toward advocacy and activism.

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