During teacher appreciation week, tell a teacher you care

Teacher Appreciation Week Monday, May 6, begins “Teacher Appreciation Week.” For all the great things teachers do, it should be a year-round event.

As a parent of two, I deeply appreciate everything my kids’ teachers have done for them. It was their teachers who encouraged their reading and writing. It was their teachers who taught them to play music, solve problems and look for answers.

In many cases, children spend more of their waking time in schools with their teachers than they do with their family. Teachers are role models, coaches, cheerleaders and provide a shoulder to cry on when bad things happen. Their care for students extends beyond school walls. 

I’ve seen teachers who can barely make ends meet in their own homes, quietly take up a collection amongst themselves to pay for emergency food or lodging for a homeless family whose child is in their classroom. Sadly, in recent events, we’ve even seen teachers lay down their lives to try and protect their students.

Teachers are called upon to make schools safe for your kids and mine. They break up fights, try to stop bullying, make everyone feel safe and keep order in the classroom. For all that, they get sworn at, get (credible) death threats from students and blame from parents when their child doesn’t do well.

As a society, we ask a lot from our teachers. We entrust our most valuable resource – our children and their future – to them. We ask them to educate and motivate young minds and give them guidance.  

Yet the hours are long and the pay is low. Many teachers are in the classroom long before the start of the “contract” day and stay long after. Papers, tests and projects don’t grade themselves. It’s done by a teacher and often at home in the evenings and weekends. The stress takes its toll. Statistically, 45 percent of teachers leave the field after only five years.

I’ve heard people say that teachers have it easy with summers off, time off at Christmas and again in spring. The teachers I’ve met spend that time taking classes to renew their teaching license, planning out the next year’s curriculum or working a second job to make ends meet.

Make no mistake about it – teachers love what they do. They do it to make a difference in a child’s life. They do it to see the excitement in a student’s eyes when they “get it.”

Yet for everything our teachers do, they are seldom shown appreciation. This year, show your appreciation. Take a moment to thank the teachers in your life for all they’ve done.

by Eric Wolf on Tue, May 07 2013 12:28 pm
Posted by Eric Wolf on Tue, May 07 2013 12:28 pm


Paul Bauman said on May 08, 2013
I completely agree. We should show our appreciation for teachers EVERY week. As my son gets ready to start college, and my daughter prepares to start high school, I am seeing the positive results of our local educators. Thank you, teachers!
Cesar said on Aug 22, 2013 system just laid off our one day a week art techear and now I just found out that I am picking up 10 more classes a week-YIKES! Two new principals and new suerintendent-so my champions are no longer here. In order to do this I have no "passing time" between classes, which are by the way all different grade levels, and get kids from they moment they are off the bus to after they call for buses. I am sad, frustrated and a bit demoralized...Over the years I have had some pretty bad schedules, but for the past few it has been mangageable with good plan time, same grade levels blocked in a row and five minutes passing time between for clean up. It is always disheartening when you feel the progress you have made is just gone:(

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