At the end of last summer, my wife and I watched our little girl step on a school bus for the very first time. With tears in our eyes, we wrote the post, “Written With Love On Your First Day of Kindergarten”, as a piece of our collective heart forever took her first real steps without us by her side. Her smile radiated and her confidence sparkled, but for her mom and dad, letting her grow wings, we’ll admit, was hard. For us, it meant that it was time to start to let go, even just a little bit.
As two educator parents, with almost 30 combined years of experience in schools, we fully understand the stressors put on teachers, principals, secretaries, and support staff – every day. Running a school building, teaching dozens of kids, and making sure things go smoothly is no easy feat. Over the course of this year, we’ve watched you work tirelessly, for every student, and day after day put kids at the heart of your decision making. But, it’s not just that which you’ve done.
You’ve made them feel safe.
You’ve made them feel secure.
You’ve made them know that they matter.
You’ve made them feel smart.
You’ve made them feel that they can do anything they set their mind to.
You’ve made them feel loved.
Last night, tears began to stream from our little girl as she laid with us before bedtime. As every parent understands, our heart sunk in asking what was wrong.
“I don’t want summer to come. I don’t want school to end. I love it there,” were her words.
As parents, I’m not sure if there are better words to hear about school than, “I love it there.” In a week where many school staff members across the nation will count down the days left with excitement, we watch you make sure every day left – counts. Thank you for making every moment meaningful; for making every moment count. For them.
Since her first day, one of us has stood at the bus stop with her every day, listening to what she was excited about, the friends that she was making, and the countless things her amazing teachers [you] would do that showed how much you cared. When the bus could be seen in the distance her excitement would build. Every day when the bus pulled up and stopped in front of us, she ran to you.
Every day. She ran to you.
We can understand her tears this week. You’ve given your all to her. You’ve given her a special place to come to – a place she took her first steps away from her mom and dad. You’ve given her far more than we can ever repay.
…and for that, we say thank you.