Source: Sherman Publications

Letter to the editor
A call to keep teachers’ resources in place

June 22, 2011

Dear Editor,

Thank you North Sashabaw Elementary (NSE) Teachers and Staff.

My first child has completed a milestone, saying goodbye to elementary school and preparing for middle school. I can remember being a nervous Kindergarten parent, new to the school environment and concerned about the quality of education my child would receive.

Now, here we are six years later and I never imagined how each teacher at North Sashabaw would touch my child’s life forever. He entered as a very shy, reserved student and is emerging as a confident, thoughtful, intelligent, caring young man.

How do you thank his teachers for loving him? How do you thank them for caring about not only his educational development, but his development as a person, his ability to solve “life” problems and his understanding of the world and his position in it? Each teacher at NSE was a champion for my child. Each staff member encouraged him and provided him with positive feedback.

I have tears in my eyes as I compose this letter, because the tools that enabled the teachers to go beyond their “duties” of a teacher are being taken away. Media Center Specialist, Media Center Aid, Kindergarten Aids, First Grade Aids, Second Grade Aids, Support Staff…all the people who make up the “village” of public education are being taken away or reduced. Class sizes are increasing as teachers are being reduced.

You might say that this is happening everywhere due to our poor economy. People are losing their jobs and taking on more responsibilities. It is time for education to take on the same cuts…”suck it up.” I say that children CAN’T be compared to “widgets.” Children are our future. The quality of their education must matter! Teachers need the tools that enable them to go above and beyond their “duties” because our children need it! We are not producing robots – teachers are producing individual thinkers with many different needs.

My child is an average student who was encouraged to succeed beyond his expectations in elementary school. He entered as a shy, reserved child; developed a quiet confidence, and is emerging as leader. Thank you to each teacher, aid, custodian, social worker, speech therapist, administrator, art teacher, music instructor, physical education instructor, cafeteria worker, office staffer, parent volunteer and student at NSE for creating a “village” of love and support for my child and all the children of NSE.

Mindy Silvey

Independence Township