It’s National Teacher Appreciation Week again, but this year feels a whole lot different. Parents everywhere (this one included) are hitting the wall trying to recreate the elements of a productive learning environment that existed in our children’s schools just a few months ago. As we attempt to successfully navigate the matrix of information and decisions that teachers make everyday in doing their jobs well, social media feeds around the world are teeming with parents’ collective frustration at how hard this task is without the “magic” of teachers.
Magic is a misnomer, because we are now intimately aware at both the global and the individual household level of just how much hard work goes into being a teacher capable of attending effectively to students’ academic and social-emotional needs every day. We are equally aware how much work is done aligning student supports across systems, schools and classrooms to keep our students safe, fed, academically on-track and engaged. When have we ever been able to have a truly global conversation about the value we feel for these institutions– teachers, especially– and simultaneously been so aware they are undervalued as a whole?
Our great challenge will be how we keep this spirit alive and turn it into actualized gratitude and systemic change that rewards and supports teachers as professionals. We’ve previously offered our thoughts on ways we can do this. Right now, as people remain largely sheltered-in-place, we may not have the bandwidth for dreaming up innovative global solutions. But we can commit to the conversation. We should not waste this crisis, when people everywhere are awash in knees-on-the-floor gratitude for teachers, to improve the way we do the business of education.
Once we’ve all excitedly, and safely, returned to a world where we can allow our children to resume some normalcy in their lives, let us not return to normalcy in how we show our appreciation to teachers. #GreatTeachingMatters Click To Tweet Let us truly demonstrate that great teaching matters. Impact Florida looks forward to being part of that conversation. Thank you, educators!