Its not all success ...
Over the years I have lost count of the enumerable I have taught, so many become lost to memory. When you reach/teach near on 150+ different souls a year full time, let alone the many others part time. Their faces, names really do become a blur unless you are exceptional, entertaining, a challenge or normally more than one of these.
Yesterday, a former student recognized me at a local train station. I must admit, it took a moment to recall the former student. Partly because of time passing, partly because he was not the same vital soul I recall. Formerly being a very bright, gifted sixteen year old, who could easily have become a programmer. Now it is clear they are nothing of the sort.
There are some students who I am still in contact with, some already leaders in their respective fields, others motivated success stories, this soul is clearly none of these.
It was a shame it was such a short conversation, in such a public place, I could see that he needed more than an exchange of niceties, it was like someone had stolen the light from his soul.
Somewhat disheveled with nicotine stained hands, no longer smart, sharp and focused, he muttered something about a job that did not work out, and now, what ever they were doing, there was clearly no computing link.
The reality is that this short conversation brought into sharp relief the reality of education. No matter how hard you try, irrespective of what talents the soul has. The brief time a teacher has with them, is in the vanity that maybe you will give them something that will set them up for life.
But not always.