My daughter was telling me about the book she just finished in her high school English class. During a discussion about the story, a friend opened up to her about how the story hit home because she had just lost another friend to leukemia. K’Lee said the emotional flood gates opened as she felt so much sorrow for her friend and also for herself.
At this point, class is over and kids are leaving. K’Lee’s English teacher asked if she was okay. My poor emotional daughter said she couldn’t contain the tears as she pointed to the TV they’d just viewed the movie version of the book on and sobbed, “This is just so real for me. This is my reality.” Her teacher sat beside her and took the time to ask her questions, to listen to her, to relate to her, and also to give her hope. (Her English teacher is a breast cancer survivor.) She cried with my daughter, she hugged her, and she gave her the love and attention she needed in that moment.
An administrator didn’t observe this lesson on compassion. This teacher received no training on how to handle this situation during her years in college. There’s nothing in the curriculum preparing her for this moment between teacher and student. No standardized test will ever be able to measure this great teacher for her act of humanity. My child was forever changed because of the love, compassion, and few precious minutes her English teacher spent on her in her moment of weakness. This is an example of a great teacher, and I (as a parent) could care less how many kids in her class pass their EOC (End of Course Exam) or how her administrator evaluated her. As far as I am concerned, she is Teacher of the Year! K’Lee has been blessed to have two such teachers this year. I believe strongly they were placed in her life because God knew she would need them; and for all I know, they probably needed her too.