I was tasked with handing out leaflets to the growing crowd of people curious in what the group had to say. At first the passers by refused to accept any leaflets. They seemed to be busy going elsewhere but their body language showed that they really did care but didn't have the time to chat.
That was until we came across a family from Germany.
This family, a mom, dad, sister and brother, were walking in front of Tweed when I, and others, struck up a conversation with them about the the state of education in Germany. The language barrier was difficult seeming that their English, except the mom's, was so-so and the only German I knew was gleamed off of "Hogan's Heroes."
After some banter and sharing with the family how the Untied States will wipe the flow with Germany in next Monday's Group match in the World Cup, their 21 year old son agreed to answer some questions about German education and be videoed for posterity.
Notice anything? Our German friend shared with us that Germany does not rely on standardized tests for it's students and even though he did not understand what the word respect (respektieren in German) he shared with us that teachers are treated well in Germany.
More shocking, when asked what makes a good teacher, the young man alluded to that teachers have autonomy in the classroom and was shocked and dismayed that teacher's get punished for not being perfect.
They promised to go back to Germany and share the plight of NYC teachers and teachers throughout the United States.
Oh one more thing. Off camera they agreed that the NYCDOE does need a spring cleaning and that there are way too many lawyers employed at Tweed.