Teachers now and thenPublished 12:04pm Wednesday, January 22, 2014
Last week while looking at the photos and stories about local teachers who were being honored, some of my former teachers came to mind. While I do not remember specific educators being nominated or named ‘Teacher of the Year,” I am sure there was some type of recognition for those who excelled in their chosen profession.
One of the most amusing differences between way back then and now is the fact that many of us did not know teachers really had a life outside of the classroom. If you ran into a teacher at a grocery store, it was a really big deal, or anywhere out in public you were surprised they really did get to leave school. It’s different in today’s world of technology. Students have teachers personal cell phone numbers and can text them any hour of the day, or night.
But many of the best things have not changed over the years. It was and is apparent when a teacher is definitely working at his or her calling, when the desire to make a difference in the lives of their students is first priority. Teaching is not an easy profession, especially with the bureaucracy and politics that are so interwoven in the educational process.
Then and now good teachers show concern and care not just for their education, but also for the student. One of my favorite teachers, Adelle White, always made sure her students knew church was important and being a good Christian. In fact, I can still remember when someone shared they had been “saved” or as we used to say, “asked Jesus into their heart” they always got a hug, and I think I can remember seeing some tears as this news was shared.
Unfortunately, this might not be possible now, but I still believe that students are able to see if not by words, but by example those who truly care for them and only want what is best. Those are the teachers who tend to hold a special place in my heart. Those who you knew wanted you to be the best you could be, both as a student and as a person, and worked hard to help you achieve both. Thanks to all teachers past and present who have and are still making a difference in their students’ lives. While teacher’s salaries may not make most wealthy, you are definitely laying up treasures in heaven by taking care of God’s children. May He bless and guide you as you go about your most worthy profession.
Randy Garrison is the president and publisher of the Hartselle Enquirer.