• Jared Mlynczyk

One COVID-19 Takeaway: Teachers are Indispensable

Teachers, we are thankful for you.

Across the country, both public and private school families are experiencing many repercussions as a result of COVID-19. During this temporary hardship, families are counting their blessings and realizing that it takes a God-given amount of patience, expertise and perseverance to be an effective teacher.

Long before COVID-19, we've been living in a technological society. Most people with the appropriate means can now access information about any topic and learn at their own pace and on their own schedule.

While technology has assisted education in many ways, it doesn't replace the intangibles that teachers bring to the table: strong moral character, zeal for instructional content, motivation, and a sense of belonging.

One could argue that a very effective teacher makes dry curriculum come alive and digestible for his/her students. A teacher engages students in extraordinary ways by building relationships, setting expectations, and demanding excellence at all times. And in a Christian school environment, it also includes leading students towards Jesus Christ in everything they say and do.

Likewise, a teacher knows how to adapt. The teachers at Eugene Christian School, for example, have recently completed a 180 by learning how to teach 3 to 14 year-old souls online in a matter of days. Now they just want to get better and improve upon their (online teaching) craft to serve our students.

Teachers are constantly adapting and retooling lessons for every child to be successful. Some of the great ones do it with such ease you wouldn't even notice.

For those parents who've ever volunteered in class, this shouldn't be a surprise. In fact, a few studies have reported that teachers make over 1,500 decisions in a typical school day. That's why they are always tired when they leave a school building while knowing there's still more work to do.

All teachers -- from the rookies to the veterans -- know they could do something better. Teachers are constantly learning from their experiences with classroom management, parent relationships and instructional practices. The list goes on and on.

It's an impossible kind of career. A job description could not possibly state all of the expected and unexpected outcomes. Many teachers struggle emotionally with so many unfulfilled tasks and expectations, always wondering when 'good' is good enough.

That's why, I believe, teachers deserve our prayers and blessings. An encouraging word.

So, let's raise a glass to teachers. When classrooms open back up, I think we'll experience a revival in families' appreciation -- at least in part -- for the amount of time, energy and sacrifice our teachers commit to our children each and every day.

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