An Open Letter to Pleasant Valley Teachers

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pleasval.org

In this difficult time, Pleasant Valley teachers have done all they can to help make things as easy as possible for students to succeed.

Taze Wilson, Assistant Editor-in-Chief

Dear Pleasant Valley Teachers,

I would like to say thank you. In a year like none other, you are working relentlessly to provide the best education possible for a struggling student body. And it is appreciated.

I am sure many of you were not excited about returning to teach this year. Between the hybrid schedule and online students, this year was certain to be a challenging one for Pleasant Valley educators. Yet you remain flexible, creative and understanding every single day, despite there being no requirement to do so.

The year brought a myriad of challenges with technology that could frustrate even the most knowledgeable of tech users. Google Classroom, Google Meets, Zoom calls and a thousand emails are drowning many of you in more work than your job has ever required. Figuring out how to stream a class, and then get students to actually view it, would drive anyone up the wall.

But your efforts to provide a quality education online are paying off. Students who would otherwise have been unable to handle a traditional online education are able to rely on your posts and streams to learn the class content. Because of your efforts, school goes on.

There are many students who are struggling. More students are failing tests and missing assignments than ever before. Despite this, you are not giving up on them. You are lenient, allowing students to make up assignments without punishment and take tests after the day they are given. You understand that students are struggling, too, and your kindness towards us is a needed light in this time of darkness.

While many students feel an abundance of anxiety just being at school half the time, you give your best effort to keep classes safe and ease student’s fears. It would be all too easy to slack on sanitizing, or let students ignore safety regulations. But you are persistent.

Every time I come into class, I am asked to sanitize my hands. Desks are distanced and wiped down, students reminded to keep their masks over their noses, and crowds broken up.

Your efforts to keep students safe have not gone unnoticed. “All the teachers at PV have really gone above and beyond this year,” senior Paris Fietsam said. “They’re amazing in helping us with the hybrid transition and giving us support with everything going on right now.”

Those of you who committed to keeping school safe and open are heroes. When the pandemic is over and life goes back to normal, I hope your hard work and sacrifice for the greater good of your communities is remembered, and maybe even rewarded.

During American Education Week, I (and many other students) thank you–for your teaching, for your caring and for your neverending support. Even in this challenging time, you are doing your best to make school the best place it can be.

Thank you.