Teachers play a crucial role in shaping the minds and futures of children. Teachers work tirelessly to educate, inspire, and support their students. They often go above and beyond their job description. It's important to recognize and honor the teachers who are making a difference in their communities.
In this article, we'll highlight some inspirational teachers who are going above and beyond.
Principal Cook from Newark, New Jersey went viral for his dedication to his students. He discovered that many of his students weren't coming to school because they were being bullied for having dirty clothes, so he set up what he calls the "big room". This room has washers and dryers and donated detergent that the students can use before and after school. He often gets to the school early and stays late so that he can help his students in need. He's a huge inspiration to his students, community, and other educators around the country.
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Mr. Jones' school was one of the schools that got free lunches for the students during the pandemic. However, that only lasted a year and students in his school were struggling to pay for their lunches. Mr. Jones decided to make a 6 second TikTok video to raise money to pay off some of the student lunch debt that had been accrued. Little did he know it would raise over $30,000 in donations. Mr. Jones was honored the Wasatch Education Foundation's Distinguished Educator of the Year last May and is working with a foundation to use the donated money to cover the outstanding lunch fees in his school district.
@cgj205 Kids can’t learn if they’re hungry and don’t deserve to be handed a bill for lunch at a place they have to be. School lunch should be free. #teachersoftiktok #teacher #schoollunch #middleschool #elementaryschool #highschool ♬
This story is well known now as it was told in Home Life Magazine in 1976. Mrs. Thompson was a 5th grade teacher with a student named Teddy Stoddard. He was withdrawn, unpleasant, messy, and didn't do his work. She began to enjoy marking up his papers with a big red marker.
She was required to review each student's history with previous teachers. She started with kindergarten. The teacher said he was bright and happy. Then second grade. The teacher said that he was bright and wonderful but that his mom had a terminal illness, and he was struggling at home. Third Grade. That teacher said he was struggling over his mother's death and his father didn't take much interest in him. As you can imagine, his fourth-grade teacher's notes were the worst yet saying he was disinterested in school and often falling asleep in class.
She felt guilty for how she had dealt with Teddy and decided to show interest in him. During the holidays each student brought her a gift. The other children laughed when she opened Teddy's gift in front of the class and inside was a bracelet missing stones and a half full bottle of perfume. She happily put on the bracelet and perfume and Teddy stayed after class long enough to say "Mrs. Thompson, today you smelled just like my mom used to."
As she worked with Teddy throughout the year, his mind came alive, and he became the happy child he used to be. He became one of the brightest students in class. A year later she found a letter under her door from Teddy saying she was the best teacher he had ever had. 6 years later Teddy sent her a letter that he had finished school 3rd in his class. 4 years after that she recieved a letter that he powered through college and was graduation with the highest honors and that she was still his favorite teacher. 4 years after that he sent her a letter that he got his bachelor's degree signed Theodore F. Stoddard, MD. One last letter was sent. He told her he had met a woman and was getting married. He explained that his father had died, and he wanted to know if she would sit at the wedding in his mother's place. She accepted and wore the bracelet and perfume Theodore gave her in 5th grade.
These are just a few of the many teachers who have made a difference in their students' lives. These educators can inspire us to find ways to make a change in our students' lives.
CE Credits Online offers online professional development courses for K-12 teachers in the U.S..