How hard is it to be a school teacher?

Teaching is one of the hardest professions there is (sorry haters)
We deal with children from such diverse backgrounds and are expected to produce uniform results.  In many cases our "effectiveness" as teachers is determined by how well we do this.  Teaching is not industry.  If someone sends us sub-par materials, we don't get to send them back...
Teaching is extremely draining from an emotional standpoint.  We learn things about our students' lives that are horrible and that no one should have to know.  Worse yet, in most cases there is little that we can do to fix these things.  Don't think that takes an emotional toll on you?  I have often joked that the only people emotionally equipped to marry a teacher are either other teachers, police, firefighters or ER physicians/nurses.  Reason being...if you are not able to vent at the end of a day of teaching then you are going to explode/implode/burnout in short order.  Those other professions are people who have similar needs and therefore are able to deal with you after work (yes, dark humor I admit).
Teaching/The Educational System is increasingly being run by people who have no experience in education or more specifically, the classroom.  Imagine having your business being run by someone with no experience in the field.  Would that lead to some stress in your life?  How about principals with all of three years teaching experience?  Or principals who were guidance counselors or PE teachers?  These are supposed to be the educational leaders of a school and those who help us all become better teachers.  How is that supposed to work?  (And understand, there is nothing wrong with being a guidance counselor nor a PE teacher, but reality is those fields did not prepare you to be a principal...sorry).
Teaching is becoming more challenging because of the overuse of media as a baby sitting tool.  From TV to mobile phones to tablets, students want to be entertained rather than taught.  Sitting down and studying something until you actually know it is impossible for many of these kids.  Parents refuse to say no, and even when they do, they give in.  This creates kids who are largely uneducable.
All of that being said, I am glad I am a teacher.  In spite of all of these challenges I am rewarded daily when I see my students finally get something.  I am rewarded when that student who didn't care suddenly starts to work hard.  I am rewarded by those who leave for college and come back, not only successful, but thankful for how I prepared them to succeed at a higher level in college.  Yes, it would be nice to make more money (of my 10 closest friends, I am the lowest paid [after 30 years] by a factor of 5 on the low end and a factor of 50 on the high end) to pay for college for my own kids.  But I will have a pension and that security is notable and I have saved wisely since I started teaching knowing I would never be rich.  Ultimately, I wouldn't change a matter how hard it is to be a teacher (sometimes).
Thanks for the A2A :-)
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