Opinion: I’m a teacher, and I don’t want to die with your child in a tornado

Today’s storms did not turn out to be as widespread as expected, exposing school districts that preemptively closed to criticisms they overreacted. (Robert MacDonald via AP)

Rachel Williams Grimes is a tenth grade language arts teacher at Ware County High School. She says her passions are “students’ rights and future visions.”

She writes an eclectic and compelling blog you can find here. Grimes describes her blog as “stories from a complicated life.” This is the most-read piece, about her granddaughter who was born with anencephaly.

Grimes sent me this new essay from her blog. In the piece, she addresses the complaints about school districts that either closed today or released students early because of the threat of tornadoes and violent weather. While at least four possible tornadoes swept through Georgia today, touching down in Newton, Randolph, Dodge and Webster counties, many areas were spared the severe weather that had been predicted.

With her permission, I am sharing the essay here.

By Rachel Williams Grimes

Dave Sanders was the first teacher to haunt me. I would wager that, although you have forgotten him, many teachers could instantly tell you, “He died in Columbine. His students held up his pictures of his family members as he bled out on the floor.”

Liviu Librescu’s name cannot be spoken with enough reverence: a Holocaust survivor, this professor chose to hold his Virginia Tech classroom’s door shut so his students could escape the raging gunman on the other side. Librescu died.

Twenty-seven-year-old Sandy Hook teacher Victoria Soto hid her small students in a cabinet and then faced down gunman Adam Lanza, telling him her kids were in the gym. Her students lived; their teacher died.

Third-grade teacher Jennifer Doan was pregnant when she heroically shielded her Oklahoma elementary school students with her body in a desperate attempt to save their lives during a 2014 tornado. Seven of her 20 kids died. 35%. Gone.

I can tell you about these teachers – and others like them – because I, too, am a teacher. Like bankers, who keep up with new federal regulations, and chefs, who learn about the latest food trends, teachers are constantly educated, too. We don’t wile away our days making cutesy bulletin boards and singing songs about friendship: we do real work.

And a large part of that work is making sure your children are safe. And so we continually think about what we would be willing to sacrifice for your child.

Before Liviu Librescu’s death in 2007, very few American classrooms could be locked from the inside. Teachers, during lockdowns, had to go out into the hall and lock their classroom doors. Most of us who taught before 2007 did this –grabbed our keys at the principal’s urgent voice, dashed into the hall as quickly as possible, hurriedly locked our doors, and ducked back in, saying grateful prayers that we were okay, having done our required duties – and kept your children safe.

My husband, also a teacher, was pulled from his classroom several years ago and told, “There’s been a bomb threat . . . look around for bombs.” Your children? Safe.

At the same school, he was also told that, if there was a fire, he was to “go deep into the building to see if any children were left inside.” As a teacher – not a firefighter – he was expected to display this level of de facto heroism. To keep your children safe.

I have hidden my autistic elementary school students in a bathroom while an angry man with a weapon roamed the campus. I have had a rib broken and rotator cuff torn by a student. I have been threatened by an angry, belt-wielding parent as I stepped between her and her child. I have dashed out of a prom carrying burning decorations. I have been brave for your kids.


Right now, though, I’m not being brave. I’m at home eating pimento cheese on Ritz crackers in my blue polka-dotted pajamas. School was called off early today because there was a chance of tornadic activity. So far, a drop of rain has not fallen, and our school system was ridiculed by a meteorologist on TV in the next major town.

That meteorologist has never been in a classroom. Taught 115 kids for 180 days. Pinned their homecoming boutonnieres on; visited them in hospital rooms after football injuries and car wrecks; held their hands in funeral homes after their relatives died; videotaped their promposals, having first been complicit in the hiding of the Teddy bears and Snickers bars. That weatherman has never been knee-deep in children.

I have been. I am.

For those of you who have not been, imagine this: you are single, but have a large brick home, and you are hosting a spend-the-night party for your son, Johnny. He has invited 30 friends, and they all said yes. Everyone is coming. You have assembled a bouncy-house, pre-ordered the pizza, and iced the homemade Power Rangers cake. You’ve rented a party bus to transport them to Chuck E Cheese for a night of fun. Imagine, then, just 15 hours before, you hear that a squall line with 60 mile-per-hour winds, large hail, thunderstorms, and perhaps tornadoes, too, is likely headed your way.

Your next move, of course, is to cancel the party.

It’s a no brainer. If parents insisted on sending their kids before the storm hit, you would lock the doors and hide. You would not let those kids in your house because they might get hurt. You would cancel the bus and forfeit the deposit because who wants to be on a bus with children in a tornado. Who would chance that? Who would make that gamble?

As a party host, you would assess the risk – you would think about your liability; you would consider how many things could go wrong. You would choose the wiser path.

Sure, a wind shift could result in you eating hypothetical cake alone under a sunny sky while people Facebooked about how foolish you were. However, the alternative hypothetical, with your son surrounded by seven of his best friends’ bodies and people still Facebooking about your idiocy – well, that’s too much to bear.

So, know this: of all the heroic teachers listed above – Sanders, Librescu, Soto, and Doan–only Doan could have possibly been spared her trauma. Her school system likely had two hours’ notice before the EF5 tornado flattened Plaza Towers Elementary. They stayed with their students.

I’m grateful I didn’t have to stay at work today in potentially dangerous conditions. Because I already knew about the pregnant teacher who tried to keep her students safe during a tornado.

Who broke her back and sternum.

Who lost seven students.

Who holds a baby in her arms named for a student who died – whom she felt die beneath her palm as they lay together, crushed in the rubble.

Most teachers, like me, already knew about her. Now, you do.

Please, tell me again about how this weather day hurt you.

 

 

Reader Comments 0

106 comments
BloodBike1
BloodBike1

CLAP CLAP CLAP. I appreciate you.

LulaR.Fowler
LulaR.Fowler

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Jen Beal Fields
Jen Beal Fields

Teachers are human! Please stop with the unrealistic expectations.

bendellman62
bendellman62

Let no good turn go unpunished. Thank you fo r all you do!

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

Most teachers go into the educational profession because they desire to give to others something of value.  The Founding Fathers of our nation were blessed not only with high intellect but the need to give something wonderful to the future of our world.


There is too much cynicism and criticism in our world today.  We must all aspire to be givers again and stop blaming.  Just roll up our sleeves and give.  It is not that hard to do, but we have to change what we value to something of more substance and to that which is more connected to the spiritual truths in our universe, once more.


The author fully understands what I have written, I am most certain.  God bless her for being an exemplary example of a teacher.


Side Note:  Watch "The Miracle Worker," starring Anne Bancroft and Patty Duke this Sunday at noon.  I believe it will be on Turner Classic Movies or one of the PBS-TV channels.  This is the true story of Helen Keller and her great teacher, Annie Sullivan, who pulled Helen out of the Hades of her own isolation, as a gift of the teacher to her student.

Starik
Starik

@MaryElizabethSings I've met a number of teachers who are utterly unqualified; teaching is by far the best job they could get, and it shows.

MaryElizabethSings
MaryElizabethSings

@Starik @MaryElizabethSings


Why do you mainly seem to focus on the negative, relative to teachers, Starik?  Every profession has its exceptional personnel and its less qualified personnel.  


As I had written before, there is too much cynicism in today's world, which leaves too many without hope. Teachers can be trained to be better educators if they are sub-par presently, as is true with employees in other professions, as well.

Starik
Starik

@MaryElizabethSings @Starik I've had a lifetime of bad experiences with some teachers; teachers can't teach a subject they haven't mastered themselves. Then there's the coaches... We need to upgrade the profession.

AlreadySheared
AlreadySheared

"You ... have a large brick home, and you are hosting a spend-the-night party for your son, Johnny. He has invited 30 friends, and they all said yes. Everyone is coming .... then, just 15 hours before, you hear that a squall line with 60 mile-per-hour winds, large hail, thunderstorms, and perhaps tornadoes, too, is likely headed your way."


Well, if I live in a substantial residence that is MUCH more solidly and soundly constructed than my kid's friends' houses/trailers, I say

"we're supposed to have a storm blowing through, but I am fine with everyone's kids staying in to party in my house if you want to bring them."


I am hard-pressed to imagine that very many students reside in homes that are safer and more substantial than a public school.


I also have no idea what all the above has to do with situations in which schools are assaulted by active shooters.  Hopefully the teacher who posted this doesn't teach something that requires critical thinking.




BaronDeKalb
BaronDeKalb

@AlreadySheared Here's some critical thinking: most public schools built in the last 25 years are light, flimsy, and cheap instead of being built like fortresses and bomb shelters like schools in the 50's often were. The reason is because of cheap skate citizens and their school boards who don't want to spend the money making their own kids safe — yet who expect teachers to be baby sitters, lifeguards, and cops, and at low salaries to boot. You sound like one of those citizens. 

jupiter9
jupiter9

@Starik @BaronDeKalb @AlreadySheared You think 40,500 is a good salary?  While it's not bad, it's still on the low side for skilled, professional jobs.  Considering that apartment rent shouldn't be more than 30% of your take home pay, that limits you to rent of $750 per month, not enough for most one bedroom apartments.

Another comment
Another comment

That is low for a person with a 4 year degree. Tuition and Room and Board at Georgia, Georgia State etc. is $22k per year. That is $88k. The cost to attend 4 years of college should equal your first year pay. It is not even half.

Starik
Starik

@Another comment Only for a real degree; Online "universities" shouldn't count, especially as a joke Ed.D degree from a diploma mill can increase the salary to over $90k. You can'e expect to recoup the cost of a real education in a single year, (or three or four years) much less for an online education or bottom tier college. Beginning government lawyers are paid less, with greater educational requirements and a need to pass a bar exam which is not a joke.

Redheadedlass
Redheadedlass

 I understand why Ms. Grimes feels the way she does, because I'm a teacher and I also understand the dismissive or angry comments because I wasn't always a teacher.  Teaching has become my second career.  Before teaching, I would have been inclined to side with some of the nay-Sayers, to a degree.  But after teaching, I can without a doubt, tell you that is almost impossible to understand what is like being responsible for students and the stresses of teaching.  There is no way you can even begin to understand unless you've been employed in the school system. 


Teachers don't pick this career because they want to a lot of money or for the summer breaks.  They teach because they believe in something bigger than themselves, they believe in your kids and are willing be underpaid, overworked, spend their own money on supplies, coach, chaperone school events, stay countess hours after school helping students, loose sleep worrying about their students or even give up their lives, to try to make a difference in their student's lives. Teaching is definitely not the most dangerous or stressful job out there, I wouldn't want to trade places with a fireman,police officer, or a soldier and don't even pretend to understand what they go through on a daily basis. 


Ms. Grimes isn't trying to trivialize her job or your kids. And I'm sure that she would lay down her life to protect your kids, if necessary.  What she is saying, is why take  a chance, when it isn't necessary, that could potentially cost her and her student's safety and lives. When I was in grad school getting my MA in education, I don't remember any classes or discussions on emergency situations.  There was never a lecture on how to act a a human shield  between a gunman and your students, but that's what a teacher would and will do.  The kids aren't just students, they are almost an extended family. You many only be responsible for your kids, but a teacher is not only responsible for them, but add another hundred or two to that.


Last year in 2016, there was a big snow storm on a school day. The school board, didn't dismiss school early because they didn't want another snow day to make up, so they chanced it.  Well, the blizzard hit, couldn't see an inch in front of you, the roads were an ice skating rink.  School let out at the normal time, buses and everyone was stuck in miles of traffic or were in an accident, one school bus skidded off an embankment, but luckily no one was hurt.  None of buses got the kids home until 10, 11 that night. It could have gone either way, the storm could have missed us.  But was it worth missing a half-day of school?  By the way, I ended up skidding off the road too on the way home. 

McGilligan
McGilligan

Very nice. Thank you. It's helpful to hear from this perspective. Some of the comments below have some helpful perspective, too. We shouldn't rush to judgment about decisions like this.

Kirstin7777
Kirstin7777

 Wow- I cannot believe the ignorance of so many who have posted here! Being a teacher is one of the most difficult jobs in the world and all of you who are scoffing at this heartfelt essay have clearly never faced a room of 30 bouncing 7-year olds, having to not only keep order, but also teach them! Neither have I, but I am a pediatric nurse and I think teachers have the tougher job! They must not have ever had a strong bond with a child and understand what it is like when tragedy befalls that child or their family. Teachers do not just teach- they counsel, guide, feed, clothe, and care for their students. Do you know how scary it is for children to go to school now? There is a school shooting practically every day! School districts work very hard to provide resources with an ever-shrinking budget. I applaud this teacher for being so honest about her fear. No one wants to be the one standing between a gun and 30 frightened, crying 7-year olds and it is our job to support teachers. All of you complaining about harder jobs- get real and try doing your job with rowdy 30 7-year olds and then tell me who works harder!!!

ACE30144
ACE30144

Lots of jobs have downsides.  Learn to live with it.  The rest of us have.


JeffTaylor
JeffTaylor

What a drama queen. Guess it was inevitable that we would get to the point where teachers think it is heroic for them to walk into a classroom. Try logging for a day, or any actually dangerous job. The kicker is that schools have been overbuilt since the 1950s to serve as community shelters. That is why they cost so much to build per square foot (that and school boards are easily snowed by contractors.) For anything short of nature's merciless wrecking ball, an EF5 twister, a public school is not poor choice for shelter from a storm. When Hurricane Hugo roared thru the Low Country where did the residents of shotgun shacks -- I mean SHACKS -- find shelter? The local schools. I recall one in Williamsburg Co. that had a stand of pine trees scattered like toothpicks outside and a corner of its roof had been lifted, but those inside made it thru safe and dry. My sincere advice is to get some perspective and get over yourself. No one is out to get you. Life is just life.

jupiter9
jupiter9

@JeffTaylor And, her point is also that it shouldn't be a "big drama" for parents or others to have school cancelled for a day.  

Another comment
Another comment

My question is what about all the rural students that do not live in your nice brick house. Instead they live in a trailer or a ramshackle house. This is the landscape that dots these counties and much of rural Georgia and the country outside of the urban areas.

I will tell you from personal experience as a child it is scary as hell growing up in a mobile home aka a Trailer even when it is a bad rain storm. I lived in one from 0-17 1/2 when I escaped and went to college. I luckily did not grow up in hurricane or tornado alley. I often even now think of how terrifying it would be to live in a trailer in a State like Alabama or Georgia that Tornado's rip through.

My advise is teacher, please put yourself in the shoes of the lower social economic kids, white, black, brown, purple, who don't life in a brick house. It is much safer for those kids to be at school. Not only from the weather, but from the daily turmoil of the chaos of poverty.

modernnewser
modernnewser

@Another comment  It was a visual reference. Most schools in this country are "large brick homes" (large brick buildings). It was not a socioeconomic thing. She was trying to paint a situation, similar to that of which a teacher would be in given a dangerous situation like a tornado.

Redheadedlass
Redheadedlass

@Another comment She was just using the "brick house" story as a metaphor, not literally.  It wasn't meant as a comment on socioeconomic class or race.

Lisa D.
Lisa D.

@Another comment , yes because those 'temporary buildings' (often used for decades) are so much more safe.... you know what else they are called?  Trailers.  Many students are in trailers at school because their school districts/states cannot or will not find the money to build more or enlarge present schools to meet the demands of current populations.

WMW<3
WMW<3

@Another comment  I teach in a very rural community, in a high poverty school. Our school has under 200 students and my classroom IS a trailer. There are two other classrooms at my school alone that are also in another trailer. In our school district, and many others, schools are using trailers as classrooms because the older schools are too small. We also have a school in our district that was put up as a "temporary" school many years ago, before I was even born. These trailers and temporary metal buildings are not a safe place to be in a severe storm situation. 

In my particular classroom, there was an incident the week before school started this year where a bullet went through the wall, through my Smart Board and through my class. Yes, it went right through the outside wall through my class. It was right at my temple level. A shooter would not even need to enter our school, or my class, to take lives. I teach preschool, we have two teachers (myself and a paraprofessional), a volunteer foster grandparent, and up to 20 students. The other two classes are 3rd and 4th grade classes. Our class room trailers are not built for threats; weather or socially related.

Stating that a child's home is not adequate enough and the school is a safer place is not a valid argument; it should not be the school boards responsibility. If the child has no heat, water, or electricity, the parent is held responsible. If you are stating that a home isn't adequate it is the parent’s responsibility, not the state or schools’. (Yes, I do believe the school should provide a safe place as well). 

Also, stating that children living in trailers live in poverty, or children that live in poverty need to be at school and out of the home because of "chaos" is also a completely outrageous remark. Working with children my entire life I have seen people from all different economic status's treat their children in some very disturbing and abusive ways. I have seen children from the poorest of homes have the happiest attitudes and the most loving and involved parents. The amount of money you have, where you live, does not define you or how you treat your children.  

Everyone assumes that schools are a safe place, unfortunately that isn't always the case, for what ever reason. I agree with the author of this blog piece and the point she was trying to get across. In a dangerous or potentially dangerous situation, better safe than sorry. I know I would rather have my own children home with me than on a snowy road, in a school during a tornado watch, or one of the hundreds of other hypothetical situations we could come up with. These children are our future, one day of missing school isn't going to harm them, they are usually made up anyway; but you cannot make-up the mistake of sending them and the unimaginable actually happening...

RamonMendoza
RamonMendoza

As always, if educators guess wrong, we'll form the rhetorical lynch mobs to let them know how we feel about it.  This derision and lack of support from the community is the number one reason why so many well-qualified people don't stay in the profession.

Tai Davis
Tai Davis

The law says kids have to go to school. I have no idea why teachers think they are more about children's safety than parents are. This should really stop. Like parents only send their kids to school to have baby sitters. Since when is is ever ok for public servants to treat the public like they are owed for doing their jobs? I'd love to see these people survive a private sector career.....seriously.

Pamela Walker
Pamela Walker

That was not the crux of her article at all. Not sure if you were really referring to teachers as "these people" or not but I really hope not. I worked in the "private sector" for Fortune 500 companies for 25 years before becoming a teacher and I can tell you that teaching is the hardest job I have ever had. Teaching ABC's is the least of what we do. We love, comfort and protect. We feed, pay for lunch when parents are nit able to pay, buy supplies, pay for field trips - all with our own money. And when there is an emergency situation we put the needs of your children before our own when we stay at school overnight because a snow storm has shut down your city & the children are stuck there. We miss lunch, go home late, take work home and live with constant bladder infections from not having time to go to the bathroom. Like I said, I am not sure who you were referring to but I really hope you just misunderstood her article.

Tai Davis
Tai Davis

No ma'am. I'm expressing my opinion. YOU do those things. All teachers don't. If schools were such a loving and protected environment, we would not have school resource officers used to discipline kids with jail time or early exposure to the penal system. You are certainly not what I have encountered. I'm sure teaching is difficult, it does not however replace or negate parental experience. I wasn't aware that speaking to the "crux" of the article was a requirement. I've worked in corporate (I.T.) for over 25 years. All teachers don't do what you otherwise a child would not have been sent home with a stamp on his arm indicating he didn't have lunch money. You do those things. My direct experience is exactly as I have stated it. My comment is basically saying I'm tired of teachers acting like it's the most difficult job in world and that teachers are more concerned with kids welfare than parents are. My experience is that teachers often lump parents into a "monolith" but hardly enjoy that experience themselves. It's actually quite common to come across teachers making horrible comments about their students on social media. So my comment nor my opinion changes solely because it is based on lived experience. Challenging my comments on Facebook won't change it...an end to the School to Prison Pipeline will. When African American students have the same chances of getting OSS as everyone else...then I will believe that this is who teachers are as a whole. When black students stop getting expelled for wearing cultural hairstyles I'll believe it. Until then, these are your comments about you and your opinions. Facts say differently...

Wascatlady
Wascatlady

Other things teachers "get" to do:  Explain to a young girl that she isn't dying because she is suddenly "bleeding from her privates,"  (sometimes in Spanish!), dealing with children who are masturbating in class (and their parents), changing diapers and sanitary napkins for handicapped children, explaining to a class that their classmate died over the weekend, helping students sent to school when their parent just died because the adults didn't want to deal with it, trying to find clothes for students who come to school without coats in bitter weather, being called into the bathroom by a child screaming, to find a foot long worm passed into the toilet, a child recounting his mother turning tricks to provide food "because she didn't want to wait at the food bank, "' in addition to "typical" stuff like homelessness, loss of parental work, not enough food in the home regularly, children coming to school smelling of dope smoke, kids who "run out of" their medicine in mid-month, month after month whose parents would not allow the school to supervise the medicating, pets dying, parents in jail, and children in elementary school in the court system.


Then there is the actual planning, providing, and evaluating instruction and counseling with students and parents, plus the clerical and other expected duties.

DerekCook
DerekCook

@Wascatlady Like most jobs. There are things about my job I like and things I do not. Yet, I do not have a blog about my profession that is "woe is me." If you don't like teaching...change careers.

Lisa D.
Lisa D.

@DerekCook @Wascatlady Actually most of what Wascatlady was listing are NOT part of any teacher's job description.  It's what they end up doing when parents won't or can't do it.  A young girl should NEVER be taken unawares by her first period... and it is NOT an elementary teacher's job to explain it and prepare the student.  Don't think it happens in elementary?  Age of first menses have been going down across the board... but it is certainly not unusual for girls to be starting at 9, or 10.

Daculaweather
Daculaweather

 I wonder how many of those kids in Ware county live in trailers... my guess is a lot. If that's the case, the school would be MUCH safer than those trailers. 


I work in an elementary school and have been in the education business for 28 years, and my wife is a middle school teacher. 


Modern schools are very safe compared to older schools or your mobile home. If a teacher REALLY cared for their students safety, they would want to see them in the safest place possible.


I understand that if a school gets hit directly by a EF3 or higher, their might be injuries... but the odds of a direct hit on a school by a tornado of that strength are very remote. Yes, not impossible, but not probable. 


So the decision should be made based on what is in the best interest of the kids they serve. If your clientele lives in homes that are susceptible to storm damage, the school system should make decisions based on the safety of those kids.

Another comment
Another comment

I grew up in a trailer in another State, not in Tornado alley of Georgia. I want to thank you for your spot on comment. It is scary just in a thunderstorm in a trailer. The rain pounding on the metal roof. Feeling like you are going to blow away. I can not imagine living where there are tornado warnings going off. The school buildings are much safer!!

JMinATL
JMinATL

@Daculaweather I want my kids home, safe with me, not at school with a tornado line coming through.  Anyone who thinks otherwise is an idiot.

WMW<3
WMW<3

@Daculaweather How many schools are "modern" schools, not many, not in my state at least. How many children are in trailers as classrooms due to overcrowding? Too many to count, several trailers at each school. If a tornado would get directly hit by a tornado, it would have all the children in one place. The odds of it hitting every single one of the children's homes... not impossible, but not probable.


I REALLY care and love my students and my own biological children. I would much rather them be at home than at our school or on the road in an emergency situation. If the safest place isn't with a child's own parent or guardian, then there is a problem weather related or not. 


**See my reply comment above.

BruceWeaver
BruceWeaver

If teachers are so dissatisfied with the job, the compensation, the benefits and the working conditions then why do they stay? Are they compelled by the state to teach?


monilontra
monilontra

I don't think Bruce read the article, Ramon. He just glanced at it, saw that it was by a teacher protesting against something, and plunked down his usual knee-jerk answer to what he categorizes as "teachers kvetching." Maybe he had a bad experience in school and lashes out at every teacher he encounters? Bruce, helpful hint: this is actually not about "compensation, benefits and working conditions."

Lisa D.
Lisa D.

@BruceWeaver For. The. Children.  Just because they are called to it and are doing it for the children does NOT mean that they deserve the conditions that in which they currently work.

RamonMendoza
RamonMendoza

@BruceWeaver What they're dissatisfied with is the continual kvetching and moaning of a largely disinterested public that second-guesses their every decision. They've chosen to deal with the other stuff; and the ones who chose not to -- many of whom were great teachers -- are gone.


It amazes me that we'll raise a stink about getting the best receiver for our favorite team, but when it comes to teachers it's "why do they stay?"

P.a. Long
P.a. Long

There really are some people who do NOT want to spend a entire week with THEIR children. THEY birth them and rather someone else raise them. PARENTS THESE ARE YOUR SPAWNS. BE CAREFUL HOW YOU RAISE THEM..ONE DAY YOU WILL BE LEFT ALONE WITH THEM. "WHEN I am 60 years old will my child:"...will my child show me compassion -love-understanding? OR...will my child refuse to be bothered with me-stick me on a nursing home as soon as possible -kill me -run as far away as he/she can...YOUR CHOICE PARENTS. .YOU RAISED THEM .

Lee_CPA2
Lee_CPA2

In times of crisis, heroism abounds.  Sometimes, it is part of the job description (i.e., the police officer who runs toward the gunfire, the fireman who runs into the burning building, the Coast Guard sailor who sails into the storm....)


We sorta expect that.  Those folks knew what they were doing when they signed up.


Very often, these acts of bravery and heroism are displayed by everyday, average Americans who started their day never dreaming they would find themselves engaged in a life and death situation.  Sometimes, as the author noted, they pay with their lives.


I think the author should be thankful that her school district took the steps to cancel school.  To me, it shows that they were acting in the best interests of the students and faculty.


Too bad the author got all butt-hurt because the weatherman in the next town made a few snide comments.  

RamonMendoza
RamonMendoza

@Lee_CPA2  This didn't sound "butt-hurt" (what are you, twelve?) at all. It sounded like someone calmly explaining that they're perfectly willing to deal with a degree of risk that most of us haven't considered, but they'd prefer not to take those risks when it is avoidable.

Kirstin7777
Kirstin7777

@Lee_CPA2 Heroic deeds are not part of the job description for teachers. People who join the armed forces, police force, or become fire fighters know what they are going into. Their training prepares them for it. I think that this teacher is thankful the district cancelled school - that was the point of her article!

Beth Jackson Sample
Beth Jackson Sample

In response to @Classof1998..How many CHILDREN are dependent on you for their safety on a daily basis? Not only are we ... Yes you guessed it I am a teacher(and no I don't want a pat on the back for doing what I LOVE. Just some understanding and appreciation would be nice)... Our kids depend on us for safety, love, compassion, understanding, guidance, discipline, moral direction (for the definition of moral). My suggestion to you is to look on YouTube for Tyler Mali's poem "What Teachers Make"

Classof98
Classof98

Is there another profession that pats themselves on the back more for being hardworking and "courageous" than school teachers?  Maybe the motion picture industry.  Maybe.


If you are in the path of an F5 tornado, it doesn't matter whether you are bunkered in the hallway of a school or on your couch eating pimento cheese.  If you are not underground, injury and death is a high probability.


Anyway, I hope she enjoyed her day off.  She got's two more months of off days right around the corner.  Please, tell us again about how hard you work.

RamonMendoza
RamonMendoza

@Classof98 Cops. Those guys are continually telling us how brave they are. And also that they shouldn't be judged by bad cops.

Jayson-Lacey Rothe
Jayson-Lacey Rothe

@Classof98 Complains about teachers wanting pats on the back for being hardworking and "courageous." Which they totally are. 


Says " Please, tell us again about how hard working you are." 


Hm...maybe teachers wouldn't feel the need to defend their efforts if people didn't make comments like that. 


Just some perspective. ;) 

DerekCook
DerekCook

@Jayson-Lacey Rothe @Classof98 People make comments because teacher are usually the only professionals that complain as much as they do about their professions. There are some great teachers out there and I had many. They were very important to me. And there are many who complain more than just about any other college-educated professional. THAT is why people make comments. 


The thing is, if you don't like the job, find another one. You won't have people second guessing you...oh wait...you will, though admittedly not as publicly perhaps. But you won't get two months a year off, probably not as good a retirement deal, now the job security that teachers generally have. So come on and try it here in the corporate world. See you all summer long.

DerekCook
DerekCook

@Daculaweather @Classof98 And spend that week working in the corporate world...in late June when they would otherwise be sitting at home eating pimento cheese and crackers.

Jm73
Jm73

Class of 98 - clearly you don't have children. Clearly, you didn't do well in school. Clearly, you are a self-absorbed tiny person. Good luck with all that.

Lisa D.
Lisa D.

@DerekCook @Jayson-Lacey Rothe @Classof98 If you think teachers are the only professionals who complain, you have obviously never worked in health care at the provider level.  Teachers are often targeted... but also work on the 'front line' of a military pharmacy while patients complain about how long it takes to get their medication.  As if it the fault of the Corpsmen or Pharmacists, and not Congress' who control the budget.  I have friends in civilian pharmacies who see the same.  Granted, the corporation controls that budget, but the time to actually count the tablets and make sure they are the right thing is important.  Just as properly preparing lessons, and unfortunately completing the often repetitive and redundant administrative tasks are important or at least required of the teachers.

JMinATL
JMinATL

@Classof98 Where did she ask for a pat on the back?  Go crawl back into the hole you came out of.

Lisa D.
Lisa D.

@Classof98 Two UNPAID months off during which she will likely spend countless hours working on lesson plans for next year...either developing new ones because the curriculum/text/standards changed or working to improve already developed lessons.  She will also be working on her own professional development (additional certifications, new special education courses, required AP training for high school students) at her own expense (the AP training often includes travel & lodging expenses - nothing like spending money equivalent to a vacation to spend your days in a classroom and nights in further study).  The average US teacher spends ABOUT $750 a year on classroom supplies that the school does not supply (not only those nice bulletin boards, but classroom libraries, technological stuff).  That is in addition to supplies for students whose families either cannot or will not provide notebooks, pens, crayons, coats (yes, coats), or lunch.


No, I'm not a teacher.  I know a number of teachers and spent a lot of time in my children's schools as a volunteer, witnessing this first hand.  I am intending to seek certification and join the ranks... fully aware of the pay issues, working lunches, increased administrative tasks (while not decreasing classload), public disinterest at best, disdain at worst).  Why?  Because the education of our children is important.  Because these children are important.  Because making a difference in the life of a child is important.  And because seeing that light in the eyes of a child who finally 'gets' why 3/4 is the same as 0.75 or 75% is a joy.  Because seeing a child excited by reading a book, or performing a simply chemistry experiment is not to me missed.