National Teacher Appreciation Week
FORT LAUDERDALE/DAVIE, FL – When you look back on your life and see who the most influential people that helped shape you into the person you are today, were, for many of us, a teacher or two makes that list. After all, outside of our parents or caregivers, teachers have the most direct influence on our lives when we’re the most impressionable.
It’s in that spirit that we acknowledge all that our teachers have done – and continue to do – for our society during National Teacher Appreciation Week, May 1- 5.
It was once said that without teachers, no other profession would exist. Think about that – no matter what you do, whether you’re an auto mechanic, a police officer or a rocket scientist – you owe what you do to someone who taught you how to be what you are today. Teachers are taking today’s young minds and shaping them into tomorrow’s leaders; it is a tremendous responsibility.
Teachers are a rare breed – they aren’t pursuing a career that is going to make them a millionaire or allow them to live a jet-set lifestyle. Ask any teacher and to a person they will tell you it is something they truly love, a calling if you will, that they had at an early age. They do it because they love it, not because they are going to get rich or famous.
Their payoff is the look on a child’s face when they finally get that math concept that had been eluding them, or the child who conquers his/her fear and stands in front of their classmates and delivers a powerful speech. Or seeing a student walk across the stage and get their diploma, knowing what a difficult journey that was. To them, the result of their work is truly priceless, and for that, we take time to say thank you.
But we cannot look at the teaching profession without acknowledging that it is under attack on a number of fronts. Nearly 50 percent of new teachers are leaving the profession within their first five years. There are many reasons for that – from the low salaries dedicated for new teachers, to little or no support from their school or district when they enter the classroom for the first time, to what many in the profession say is a declining respect for the job itself.
That’s why colleges of education, such as NSU’s Abraham S. Fischler College of Education, are rededicating themselves to ensuring they not only provide students with the knowledge and abilities to become teachers, but to also work with school districts locally and nationwide, to find out what more can be done to support their newest educators so they can be successful.
So as we recognize National Teacher Appreciation Week, I encourage those of you who have children in school to take a moment to thank their teachers for all they do each and every day. If you are a student, please thank your teachers as they are helping you achieve your goals. If you’re a graduate, reach out to those former teachers who had the most influence on you and say thanks for all they did for you when you were in school.
It’s time we re-establish some of the luster that the teaching profession has lost over the years, and what a better way to start than during National Teacher Appreciation Week.
Thank you, teachers!
Dr. George L. Hanbury II, President and CEO of Nova Southeastern University, a private, not-for-profit institution that has campuses in Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Miami, Miramar, Orlando, Palm Beach, and Tampa, Florida, as well as San Juan, Puerto Rico, while maintaining a presence online globally.