The next day I came into class and asked them to fill out the online form again. I figured they'd be kind of annoyed to have to redo this work. The class is populated with second semester seniors, ready to head out into the world, restless, desperately wishing high school was over. If anyone was going to be critical of my work, it was this group.
But in the end, they left me the most positive and constructive comments of all. These seniors, these almost adult, still teenager, straining to escape, fearful of jumping into the world young men and women actually ended up making my day.
And at the exact moment I was wrapping up this blog post, a colleague shared this Slate article on professor evaluations. It posits that evaluations are worthless and the solution is that they should not be anonymous. Read it and let me know what you think.
Every day of the last months of school I never know if my seniors are going to hug me, mouth off, or burst into tears. About to face the uncertain future, afraid to leave their family and friends, anxious to escape the confines of childhood, worried about adult responsibilities, these students ride an emotional roller coaster of incredible twists and turns. It is my privilege to help them finish the ride without puking, and this week they gave me a great big hug.
I am enormously grateful, but still bracing for whatever comes next week. I'm well stocked with tissues and barf bags.