Oxford Languages dictionary defines courage as the ability to do something that frightens one and strength in the face of pain or grief.
The Stoics would define courage as living your life virtuously by holding on to your principles no matter what you are facing.
“A setback has often cleared the way for greater prosperity. Many things have fallen only to rise to more exalted heights.” – Seneca, Letters from a Stoic
We have faced many challenges in education recently. A pandemic, civil unrest, a charged political climate. All have come to our doorstep.
Each one of these has challenged what we do and how we do it.
The one thing that should never change is why we do it. The students.
What we do and how we do it can and should change as new and better ideas come along.
Why we do it that’s where the courage comes along.
We are constantly challenged by outside forces to question why we got into education.
Angry parents, unruly students, unfunded mandates, the list is endless.
We have to have the courage to filter out the noise and focus on what we can control.
We can control showing up every day and giving everything we have for our students.
We can control having the courage to make the right choices for students even when they are hard and unpopular.
“Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.” —Franklin D. Roosevelt
Our students must be more important than our fear.
Do we have the courage to give every student what they need to be successful?
Do we have the courage to take the challenges we have faced and “rise to more exalted heights?”
If we want a better world than we have today, we have to.