Editorials

Professionals in action

Everyone applauds the outstanding work done by firefighters, police, emergency medical technicians and other first responders during Hurricane Sandy, and rightly so. Sanitation workers have also been in the stricken neighborhoods around the clock. And now, as the school system struggles to regroup in the wake of vast devastation, parents are looking to teachers to provide some stability and a sense of a return to normalcy for students shaken by the unprecedented storm.

But the assistance being offered by teachers goes far beyond offering the structure of classroom routine. Teachers know that learning is about much more than academics. A whole lot of learning will be going on in our city’s classrooms now as students turn to their teachers to help them make sense of what has happened.

The emotional and psychological toll on students and their families is so heavy. Some students have suffered the unimaginable loss of friends, relatives and other loved ones. Homes have been destroyed, and lives have been shattered. Entire communities have been changed forever. Students will be looking to their teachers, guidance counselors, social workers and other school-based educators to cope with the anxiety and uncertainty they are experiencing.

Parents can take some comfort in knowing that our members are stepping up not just as educators but also as caregivers in schools to help kids get their lives back on track. Many educators are helping students and colleagues even while coping with their own personal hardships and losses because that is what we do as caring and dedicated professionals.

Read more: Editorials
Related topics: Hurricane Sandy
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