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Thank an educator today and every day

Star Herald Editorial

Teacher Appreciation Week is May 2-8, 2021, and if there were ever a time to thank a teacher, the time is now.
Teaching can be difficult, demanding and emotionally and physically exhausting work in a non-pandemic environment.
But teachers will also tell you the rewards are often worth the challenges in ways they’re not able to share, due to student privacy protection.
These past two years have placed unprecedented strain on educators in ways they couldn’t have imagined or prepared for.
It’s been inspiring to see classroom teachers reach outside the classroom and into students’ homes to bring their passion for teaching into distance learning models.
And while everyone longs for a return to normal, our teachers and parents have learned valuable lessons that will no doubt benefit in-person learning long-term.
Have there been breakdowns? Sure. Have students fallen behind? Unfortunately many have, and some may have difficulty catching up. Have our teachers had bad days? For sure. Just ask them.
But day after day, they rise to meet new challenges, and through the pandemic chaos, have discovered cracks in learning models that they can now address.
We are immeasurably blessed in Rock County to have a strong school system that values quality teachers and communities that invest in education.
Likewise, our teachers no doubt appreciate this environment.
But work often seems thankless, and they often hear only from disappointed parents whose students are struggling.
They need to know they’re appreciated.
So, this week, during National Teacher Appreciation Week, let’s tell them “thank you.”
The National Education Association has launched  hashtag promotions and text message campaigns to help the public thank teachers.
But in Rock County, we’d encourage our readers to bring that message to a local level.
It costs nothing to send a message to a teacher expressing gratitude. Or, for the price of a postage stamp, we can send something personal and tangible.
Just say “thank you” … to a friend who’s a teacher or to a teacher of our children or to a teacher from our past who has made an impact in our lives.

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