As a high school teacher, I expect to encounter individuals with a flair for the dramatic.  Historically this has been from the teenagers enrolled in the classes I teach.  However, this election season, the dramatics have been increasingly from public school teachers themselves.

I dutifully read publications from the National Education Association, despite having canceled my membership. Consider the “Trump Effect” described in this fall’s 2016 quarterly magazine NEA Today.  Auto shop teacher Mike Patterson from California writes “I’ve actually heard students say things like, ‘After Trump is elected, you’ll be on the other side of the wall.’ In my 29 years of teaching, I’ve never heard this kind of bullying.”  Cynthia Meier Lota, a fourth grade teacher in New Jersey writes that she has not permitted students to discuss the election this fall as “I’ve seen too many students spouting nasty things Donald Trump has said.”

The Facebook post of a personal colleague writes feeling “terrified” of president elect Trump, posting that “I can’t believe we don’t feel safe in our own home.”  She goes on to write she is “horrified at the unconscionable beliefs” of Americans who voted for Trump.  Well, I’m horrified that these teachers can’t see the election from a different perspective and understand why some of us voted for secure borders, health care reform, and less government red tape

A teacher’s job is to teach, and it is disappointing to see so many of my fellow teachers fail to discuss the presidential election in an unbiased way. Teachers should use this election season as a teaching moment, and encourage open discussion and respect for opinions that differ from their own.    

Arrah Massimini is a guest blogger.