Can We All Agree to Give Teachers Grace, Not Grief Right Now?


Can We All Agree to Give Teachers Grace, Not Grief Right Now?

You clapped for the health care workers. You cheered for the first responders. You tipped the waitresses, the cashiers, the clerks. Now another frontline group deserves your grace. Teachers all over the country are returning back to school. Every morning, they’re marching through the doors, masks on, or punching in that password to log in. Moms, dads, I beg you… give them grace, not grief.

Just so you know…

They spent their summer wondering and worrying about what the new year could look like. They read every article about schools in other countries. They studied COVID graphs, watched for outbreaks, hoped to see the curve flattening. They watched their email and social media for hints of what was to come. But unlike in other years, they couldn’t use the summer to plan anything, because no one knew how it would all roll out. So they held their breath and waited anxiously for news.

Just so you know…

When the news came, it came hard and fast and suddenly. As summer waned, classrooms were opened to in-person, or computer programs were opened for online instruction, giving teachers a day or two, without knowing their assignments yet, to prep their teaching space. Put plastic over all the shelves. Cover the bulletin boards with wipeable material. Sort learning materials into individual baggies. Space desks apart as much as possible in small spaces. Learn how to pivot dynamic instruction into Canvas or Google Classroom.

Just so you know…

Teachers found out a day or two before school started what grade they’d be teaching, online or in-person. A day or two to process the news that school was now online, or dangerously in-person, or both! A day or two to count up class lists and realize that with classes being collapsed as some students stayed home, class sizes skyrocketed. A day or two to read names, write them on name tags, make them into Bitmojis, put them on desks, connect them to Canvas or Classroom.

Just so you know…

Teachers didn’t sign up to be frontline workers; like the grocery clerks, they’ve been thrust into this role with little preparation. But guess what? They’re going to rock it! They can’t wait to greet their students, whether from under a mask or under a webcam. They’ll dance to Baby Shark, learn the whoa, and smile ear-to-ear at their precious kiddos. They’ll normalize pandemic schooling. And they’ll do it with positivity and pizzazz!

In the meantime…

Please, dear parents, grace not grief. Teachers need time right now. Time to answer all the emails, plan all the lessons, reach all the kiddos. Time to process this radically new way of teaching. Time to take a breath, look around, and say, “I’ve got this”.

Your children will know a new way of schooling that is fun, dynamic, engaging and unique because teachers will bend over backward to make it so, as they always have.

In the meantime…

Us parents, we need to have their backs. Grace.

Also Check Out:

Can We All Agree to Give Teachers Grace, Not Grief Right Now?

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Anne Lefebvre

Senior Member

I grew up in the city but now call small-town Ontario, Canada home, along with my husband and two teenage boys. I’m a passionate elementary school educator, but when I’m not at school you can find me playing a sport, reading, or drinking a cup of tea.

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