Ex-teacher: “I worked in a poor urban primary school. I would be teaching addition and, after six weeks, the school administrators would say, ‘Okay, move on to subtraction.’”

RH: “And what did you say?”

Ex-teacher: “The students don’t understand addition yet; don’t we want to make sure they understand…? I would get interrupted; ‘No,’ an administrator would say, ‘move on; we must keep things moving and keep the students on schedule.’”

RH: “What did you do?”

Ex-teacher: “I left teaching.”

I’m not sure that students can learn “on schedule.”

Are you? I do know that students today often don’t understand grammar, geography and math; many—including college graduates—have to be taught things all over again. Teaching was always hard work, but teachers used to be educated and have autonomy.

Today, learning seems to be about short-term results—in essence, get the students good enough so that most pass a test and then move them on. As to retention, forget about it. Way too many today don’t even understand very basic stuff—readin’, writin’ & ‘rithmetic.

I know one guy, a weight lifter with a master’s degree, who was so buffaloed by school rules and restrictions that he could not run his classroom; it must have seemed to him, a man in his forties embarked on a new career, like The Blackboard Jungle had come to life. He didn’t even last a half-year. If the bad kids are running the schools, discipline must be gone.

Have a wonderful early-March week (spring is coming, I promise, even though there’s snow on the ground in Tulsa as I write), stay on top of your own sense of discipline and keep on keeping on at helping your customers with investing.