by David Safier
May 6 through May 12 is National Teacher Appreciation Week. I spend a great deal of time picking apart education and not nearly enough time celebrating my brothers and sisters in the classroom, where I spent over 30 years.
Teachers perform countless educational, counseling, semi-parenting tasks, usually with too many students, as a regular part of their underpaid professional duties. No doubt, all of us have a teacher — actually, usually more than one — in our past who we credit with one or more of the following: saving our lives, turning our lives around, caring deeply about what happens to us, pointing us in a useful direction, making us think, making us work, teaching us invaluable skills, making us laugh, making us smile. I'm sure the list leaves a whole lot out.
I tip my hat to those of you still in the profession I've retired from, whether you teach elementary, middle or high school, whether you teach in a school district, charter or private school. You're right there where the rubber meets the road, helping to move our children, and our society, along.