Thank A Teacher


Published in the Los Angeles Times

Tuesday, February 20, 2018 

Re “He ran toward the gunshots,” Feb. 16

The tragedy in Parkland, Fla., has me reflecting on many things. One for sure is remembering how tremendously valuable teachers are in improving the lives of so many young people. (“Victim and hero: Florida football coach ushered his students to safety before the gunman came for him,” Feb. 15.)

To them, I say: Thank you so much. I know how challenging your work may be at times, but being there when our children need a caring person makes a tremendous difference. As our society is grappling with important issues such as gun control and caring for mentally ill persons, we need to also keep in mind our basic human connection, including between adults and kids.

I am reminded to take time to connect and “see” one another — to stop and see even those students who may want to remain invisible as they dangerously slip through the cracks and have forgotten that they are valued and loved. My invitation is for us to keep “seeing” their goodness.

Teachers, please acknowledge yourselves for who you are and all you do. I thank you for your dedication to young people.

Stu Semigran
Van Nuys