QUIGLEY: National Teacher Appreciation Week Has Never Been More Important

Submitted by Dan Quigley

In these divided times it is rare to find something that everyone can agree on. That is why I wanted to take the time to shine a spotlight on National Teacher Appreciation Week. 

Our teachers have faced unprecedented challenges this past year. They have had to navigate the pitfalls of distance learning, re-adjust back to a brand new classroom environment and must be prepared to change back to remote learning at the drop of a hat. They have had to manage this uniquely demanding work environment while balancing the effects it has on their own families and personal lives.

From the early, frightening stages of the pandemic, through this school year, our teachers have been an anchor in the lives of our children. Never before have they played as important a role in the daily lives of our families. 

As I look back to my years as a student in the GPS, there is a reason I can still name every, single elementary school teacher I ever had. It’s because they played a very important role in my life. I can remember all of their voices. Each one of them were different, but every one of them had the same goal; to educate each student and prepare them for the next step in their lives.

One of my favorite things to do used to be to go back and visit my teachers once a year. I always remember the smile that would come across their faces upon seeing their former students take the time to come back for a visit. I also know it gave them a sense of satisfaction to see that they had played a positive role in the lives of the kids they had taught, and that they were remembered.

Sadly, times have changed and we can’t revisit our former schools as easily now as we could fifteen or twenty years ago. In lieu of that, I urge everyone to think of our teachers this week. Give them thanks when you see them. Contribute to a class gift, or give one of your own. If you bump into a former teacher, let them know how they impacted your life.

Our teachers work tirelessly to find new ways to inspire our children’s interest in learning and spark their imaginations. They have an outsized impact on our lives, and they deserve our thanks.

Thank you GPS Teachers!!