"You are not special"

The following is about an honest, forthright speech by a Boston educator at a Massachusetts high school. What may at first seem unkind and brutal is actually a refreshing gust of reality for these students who will eventually escape the swaddling of their parents and the comfortable cocoon of formal education.

We do kids a huge disservice when we focus their educational pursuits on them, as if we humans are benefitted by implementing overly-self-driven values. Truth is, I can’t find fulfillment in myself. I have to work for something bigger than me.

You can read lengthy excerpts from the speech here. I’d like to highlight these two:

 “If you’ve learned anything in your years here I hope it’s that education should be for, rather than material advantage, the exhilaration of learning…I also hope you’ve learned enough to recognize how little you know… how little you know now… at the moment… for today is just the beginning. It’s where you go from here that matters.”

and

“I urge you to do whatever you do for no reason other than you love it and believe in its importance. Don’t bother with work you don’t believe in any more than you would a spouse you’re not crazy about.”

Here’s the condensed version
And here’s the Boston Herald reprint of the entire speech.

 

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