I don't know a single educator who entered the profession for the big bucks and the promise of the glamorous limelight. Because....everyone knows that teaching pays nothing and isn't a respected position. We go into the profession knowing very well that we will be zipping pants, tying shoes, wiping noses, holding hands, having tough conversations....AND...Laughing, loving, learning, supporting, inspiring, coaching and serving as steady and consistent mentors for kids who come to us most often with troubling stories and who are missing out on just their basic needs. Teachers know when they sign up for the job that it will mean long hours, sleepless nights and a whole lot of stress. We don't enter the job for the summer breaks (because....none of us every REALLY get to have the summer off) or "school hour" schedules. We become teachers because we want to make a difference in the lives of kids and in the future of our society. Its a simple mission that is never actually simple.
I got a call yesterday though, and it stopped me in my tracks! I got a phone call from Washington D.C. It was a personal call from Secretary Arne Duncan's office thanking me for the work that I do every day with kids. It was a thoughtful, heartfelt message that I replayed five different times because I just could not believe what I was hearing! I never became a teacher so that I would get praise....but wow....this single phone call thanking me for my hard work sure made me feel good and I can't wait to share something so exciting with my kiddos tomorrow at school!