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Story Time: The fire inside

Posted on Tuesday, August 23, 2022 at 11:14 am

By Lorry Myers

She didn’t sleep much the night before. She was nervous about walking into the classroom and agonized over what to wear on the first day. Mariah was prepared, more than prepared, but still, she couldn’t sleep the last night before the first day, her first day back at school.

Mariah is not the student; she is the teacher.

My daughter never wanted to be anything else. Mariah refused to cave when her father tried to convince her that the teacher pay scale is lacking and their summers are not what others think they are. Mariah didn’t care.

That’s not why she went into education.

Even though Mariah is not a new teacher, she still never sleeps before the first day of school. That fire inside of her keeps her awake, wondering and worrying about each child under her watch. Will she be enough, can she make a difference? Can she protect all in her care, protect them and keep them safe?

No wonder sleep comes hard for a teacher.

Lately it seems, more passionate educators are leaving education for jobs that pay them more. Jobs that value their knowledge, their dedication and the fire that burns inside them. Teachers leave teaching to better the lives of their own families, and sometimes, to rest their weary souls. The last few years have been rough and we demanded a lot of our educators.

Those demands continue.

Sometimes it is easy to forget that at the end of the day, the parent or guardian or care provider is still the parent, guardian or care provider of their child. If you are one of those people, it is your responsibility, not a teacher’s, to get your kid to school on time and make a responsible afterschool plan. Monitor the videos they watch, the games they play and what they do online. Model kindness and patience and positivity. Set a bedtime, and it would be a bonus if you curbed inappropriate language. This is your child; you are responsible for all of this.

Not your child’s teacher.

For the complete article, see this week’s edition of the Centralia Fireside Guard.