Proud to Be a Teacher

Posted on February 24, 2010

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I didn’t hear about the Littleton school shooting until I went online to check my email.  After seeing and reading the article, I am in awe of David Benke, the math teacher and track coach who tackled the gunman. He didn’t even hesitate to go after the shooter.  

We do safety drills at my school.  Almost every time a student in the class asks, “What would you do if a bad guy came in the library?”  I always answer, “I’d get between you and the shooter, and try to get you out of his way safely.”  

I don’t actually know if I’d be able to do that, much less tackle a gunman like David Benke did.  I did have a strange man without a visitor’s tag walk into a middle school library where I was overseeing my homeroom class.  I was a little surprised at how fast I reached him and put myself between him and the students.  Fortuntately, he turned out to be the AC repair person from the school board.

Teachers are overworked and underpaid; when Johnny can’t read, or Susie can’t write, we get the blame.  Parents move their children to private schools and teachers’ jobs are cut.  

Yet we are still out there every day, teaching, laughing, worrying, and watching over the students with the same care we show our own children.  

And, in some cases, protecting our students by tackling a gunman.  Thank you, David Benke.  Thank you for saving the lives of so many of your students.  Thank you for showing the nobility that lies in the heart of so many teachers.  And thank you for reminding me of why I teach.

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Posted in: Lesson Plans