Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Everyone's a Hero

Hey! It's Teacher Appreciation Week!

(Wait, what? This logo doesn't even make sense!
"I at teachers?" "I apple teachers?" Holy crap, people.)

At my school we got generic notes in our boxes, a Qdoba-catered lunch yesterday, and breakfast burritos/after-school cake today. Most of that came from our administrators, who are pretty awesome themselves.

We also got the word that extra duty pay will probably get frozen for next year and that, despite the financial situation not being as bad as forecasted, they're still going to freeze teacher salaries next year. Oh, and also that all of our district's schools scored exceptionally (and well above average) on the state evaluations.

So, yeah, I had a nice helping of irony with that after-school cake.

It's nice to be appreciated, don't get me wrong. But you know what would be awesome? If teaching was respected enough in reputation and compensation that there would be no need for a federal declaration of "appreciation".

Ooh! Also? It's National Nurses' Week.
(See that, PTA? THAT's a logo!)

If there was a holiday for philosophers, my siblings and I would hold the trifecta of appreciation commemorations this week!

Wait, let me Google... ah, sorry, Andy. Your holiday's not until November 18. Rachel and I will just have to be appreciated without you this week. Such as it is.

In fact, I think Rachel put it very well in our email conversation today regarding getting tickets to see In the Heights this weekend:

They are doing discounts the hour before the show, but for students, military, and seniors only. Boo! What about nurses and teachers? It's National Teacher's Day today and National Nurses Week this week. We should totally get discounts.

Amen, sister.

In the spirit of the week, though, I would like to make a list of the educators who have made a difference in my life. So, here is my official declaration of appreciation for the following teachers (with sincere apologies to any educator I've forgotten because it's late and I need to sleep):
  • Lois Cook (Who got me through the first years of being a teacher, and who generously shares her wisdom and materials)
  • Sylvie & Larry Evans (Who makes things fun for their kids, and who prove that teaching was inevitable for me, given my DNA)
  • Mrs. Peaceman (Who read "A Wrinkle in Time" to us in 4th grade)
  • Dr. Pearl (Who cast me in the first play I auditioned for)
  • Mr. Doze (Who got me through IB)
  • Mrs... Crap! I can't remember her name! My senior year English teacher (Who taught me how to read films like literature)
  • Max Skidmore (Who made early-morning seminary worth waking up for by recognizing the spiritual value of Indiana Jones and Groundhog's Day)
  • Sue Smith (Who made me brave enough to teach middle school)
  • Marilyn Scharine (Who helped me embrace theater again)
  • Katharine Dalton (Who gets all of her kids to dance; and who wrote "I Took Her to College", which needed to be said)
  • Emily Wall (Who inspires me to be more organized and to play)
  • Meg O'Connor (Who reminds me that I love theater and Shakespeare)
  • Jennifer Owens (Who gives me the funny side of teaching)(and of being single)
  • Craig Robertson (Who reminds me how lucky I am to have a job I'm passionate about)
  • Bob Davis (Who taught me to release my voice and that I am enough)
  • Taylor Mali (Who is the voice of teaching)
  • John Peterson (Who taught me that if my skills and knowledge are valuable, I should be paid accordingly)
  • Ben Owen (Who is the math teacher I wish I'd had in middle school, and who is the teacher I try to be)
  • Kelley Allred (Who taught me about teaching dance, sewing costumes; and who was willing to go hyper-creative right along side me!)
  • Janelle Ruesch (Who taught me how to be kinder to students, and who gave me the courage to sing in front of the entire school)
  • Brenda Whitmore (Who taught me to love the kids at STMS)
  • Jill Carey (Who taught me to teach the toughest classes with grace)
  • Heidi Van Ert (Who taught me to embrace being smart and creative, and who came up with the idea to write about what it's like to be a teacher)
and, most of all, my
  • Mom and Dad (Who taught me pretty much everything I know, including the complete libretto to Pirates of Penzance; and who said one day when I was trying to figure out what to do with my English degree, "I always thought you'd make a good teacher.")

(Oh, please stop. You're just making it worse.)

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