As of Tuesday, May 13, 2014
To the editor:
Under the heading of Random Acts that make the world a little better, please consider thanking a teacher with a letter. Spring is here, and the year has been long and difficult to explain to students, and every person inside a school wishes it was magically June already. A letter from you, someone who knows a particular student’s story and how one good teacher is like a few good Marines in effectiveness and character-building. Ink and paper is something tangible, and is likely to become an heirloom; phone calls can’t be savored except in vague memory.
My teachers down the years never were properly thanked by one particularly weird and challenging student they guided. But I did visit Mrs. Hydinger years after the third grade, in her new classroom in a new town, and that memory is my own cherished souvenir. So is the letter she wrote me. This letter to parents and friends of students in The Dalles is a little forward payback, not random at all. Thank a teacher today. Heck, thank a principal. Go crazy, and thank someone who works in our public schools, down in the trenches in the war on ignorance.