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My Hero

> Who are the Heroes of Today?
> When you have a few minutes, take time to read and smile.
> "Where are the heroes of today?" a radio talk show host thundered.
> He blames society's shortcomings on public education. Too many
> people are looking for heroes in all the wrong places.  Movie stars
> and rock musicians, athletes and models aren't heroes, they're
> celebrities.
> Heroes abound in public schools, a fact that doesn't make the
> news. here is no precedent for the level of violence, drugs, broken
> homes, child  abuse, and crime in today's America.  Public
> education didn't create these  problems but deals with them every
> day.
> You want heroes?
> Consider Dave Sanders, the school teacher shot to death while
> trying to shield his students from two youth on a bombing and
> shooting rampage at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado.
> Sanders gave his life, along with 12 students, but other less
> heralded heroes survived the Colorado blood bath.
> You want heroes?
> Jane Smith, a Fayetteville, N.C., teacher, was moved by the plight
> of one of her students, a boy dying for want of a kidney transplant.
> So this pretty white woman told the family of this handsome 14-=
> year old black boy that he would give him one of her kidneys.  And she
> When they subsequently appeared together hugging on the Today Show, even
> tough little Katie Couric was near tears.
> You want heroes?
> Doris Dillon dreamed all her life of being a teacher. She not only
> made it, she was one of those wondrous teachers who could wring
> the best out of every single child.  One of her fellow teachers in
> San Jose, Calif., said  "she could teach a rock to read." Suddenly
> she was stricken  with Lou Gehrig's Disease, which is always fatal,
> usually with five years.
> She asked to stay on the job-and did.  When her voice was
> affected she communicated by computer. Did she go home?  She
> is running two elementary school libraries.  When the disease was
> diagnosed, she wrote the staff and all the families that she had one
> last lesson to teach -- that dying is part of living.  Her colleagues
> named her Teacher of the Year.
> You want heroes?
> Bob House, a teacher in Gay, Georgia, tried out for Who Wants to
> be a Millionaire..  After he won the million dollars, a network film
> crew wanted to follow up to see how it had impacted his life. New
> cars? Big  new house?    Instead, they found both Bob House and
> his wife still teaching.  They explained that it was what they had
> always wanted to do  with their lives and that would not change.
> The community was both stunned and gratified.
> You want heroes?  Last year the average public school teacher
> spent $468 of their own money for student necessities -- work=encils --
> supplies kids had to have but could not afford.
> That's a lot of money from the pockets of the most  poorly paid
> teachers in the industrial world. Public schools don't teach values?
> The critics are dead wrong. Public education provides more Sunday
> school teachers than any other profession. The average teacher
> works more hours in nine months than the average 40-hour
> employee does in a year.
> You want heroes?
> For millions of kids, the hug they get from a teacher is the only hug
> they will get that day because the nation is living through the worst
> parenting in history.  Many have never been taken to church or
> synagogue in their lives. A Michigan principal moved me to tears
> with the story of her attempt to rescue a badly abused little boy
> who doted on a stuffed animal on her desk -- one that said "I love
> you!"  He said he'd never been told that at home.
> This is a constant in today's society-two million unwanted, unloved,
> abused children in the public schools, the only institution that
> takes them all in.
> You want heroes?
> Visit any special education class and watch the miracle of
> personal interaction, a job so difficult that fellow teachers are awed
> by the dedication they witness. There is a sentence from an
> unnamed source which says, "We have been so anxious to give
> our children what we didn't have that we have neglected to give
> them what we did have."
> What is it that our kids really need?  What do they really want?
> Math, science, history and social studies are important, but
> children need love, confidence, encouragement, someone to talk
> to, someone to listen, standards to live by.  Teachers provide
> upright examples, the faith and assurance of  responsible people..
> Now, pass this on to someone you know who's a teacher, or to
> someone who should thank a teacher today!

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