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Op-Ed: Superintendent applauds teachers’ efforts

Throughout+the+country%2C+teachers+are+being+recognized+from+May+3-7+for+their+work.+The+bulletin+board+in+the+DHS+lobby+says%3A+%22A+great+teacher+takes+a+hand%2C+opens+a+mind+and+touches+a+heart.%22
Throughout the country, teachers are being recognized from May 3-7 for their work. The bulletin board in the DHS lobby says:

Throughout the country, teachers are being recognized from May 3-7 for their work. The bulletin board in the DHS lobby says: "A great teacher takes a hand, opens a mind and touches a heart."

Abigail Martinez

Abigail Martinez

Throughout the country, teachers are being recognized from May 3-7 for their work. The bulletin board in the DHS lobby says: "A great teacher takes a hand, opens a mind and touches a heart."

Salvatore Pascarella

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To all Danbury teachers,

As we wrap up another busy school year, we look at all that our students have accomplished — from science fair awards and robotics competitions to exceptional test scores and national arts competitions. We’ve had our high school seniors accepted at some of the top schools in the country and our athletes have dominated state and regional competitions.

But as we look at their accomplishments, there’s another side to the story. Danbury is one of the most diverse districts in the region, and many of our students struggle with more than just getting into a top school, athletically making it to state finals or performing well on state tests, Advanced Placement tests and SATs. You deal with students who need much more guidance and support that they may not be receiving from their home. You deal with students from single-parent families and families where both parents work – sometimes multiple jobs, and finally with families that are below the poverty line.

I have seen teachers work to make sure students have warm coats in the winter, and these projects are designed to be exciting so that students don’t feel alienated because of their family’s financial situation. I have seen teachers work in the late afternoon with a student who struggles to pay attention in class.  I know that teachers spend their weekends taking students to competitions, pushing them to go as far as they can. Many of you have worked hard to incorporate a level of acceptance and kindness in your classrooms and schools, creating positive school climate and culture for all of our students. That care and kindness will go a long, long way for those students who once felt isolated and alone. In our schools and in your classrooms, because of you, they belong and they, too, can thrive. Our students know someone is there to help them reach their goals and live their dreams.

Pullquote Photo

You may think that your efforts and your hard work and dedication go unnoticed. They don’t.”

— Dr. Salvatore Pascarella

The school day is long and busy and many of you are at work before 7 a.m. You may think that your efforts and your hard work and dedication go unnoticed. They don’t. You are changing the lives of your students in ways that make a difference for them not just for today when they are students, but also for tomorrow when they become young adults. They will continue to grow in a positive direction long after they have left your classrooms.

Wherever there is a need in the Danbury schools, there are teachers and other school staff fulfilling that need, even if it means making a sacrifice.  I know there isn’t one of you looking for extra credit, but our students’ accomplishments wouldn’t be possible without you.

You are appreciated – Happy Teacher Appreciation Week.

I would be remiss if I did not take this opportunity to also thank all the other staff that assist the teachers in creating a positive and safe environment in our schools.

Dr. Sal

Editor’s note: The write is superintendent of Danbury Public Schools.

 

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Op-Ed: Superintendent applauds teachers’ efforts