November 18 - 22nd is American Education Week. The nation is urged to celebrate public education. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) Parent Teacher Associations (PTA's) are going the extra mile to make sure teachers feel appreciated. This is the first year CMS PTA's organized special events throughout the week to honor teachers.
"We want them to feel special," Croft Community School PTA President Nicole Abry said. "When they come here because they are special. They take care of our kids."
Abry helped organize a lunch for teachers at Croft. The meal made a difference.
"It shows our efforts are valued," Croft Community Teacher Jeff Mitchell said. "And the parents really care about what we do."
This year state lawmakers approved no pay raises for teachers, no extra money for teachers obtaining advanced degrees, and a cut in teacher assistants.
"It has been challenging," Mitchell said. "But those of us who are in the profession, we know truly why we are in it. You have to do it for the kids."
Leaders believe this is the year something had to be done to keep teachers on the job.
"So many things going on with our state legislators," Mecklenburg PTA President Harold Dixon said. "As it relates to education, We, Dr. Morrison (CMS superintendent), his executive staff decided let's do something. Let's ask our parents, our community to do something this week to highlight education."
Croft Community PTA leaders say the display of public support will continue after Education week is over.
"We always appreciate our staff," Abry said. "With our staff appreciation. And for all their birthdays, we give them a card and $10.
PTA leaders hope their efforts will encourage teachers.
"I think it also boosts morale for our school," Croft Community School PTA Vice President Julie Moore said. "When we do special things for our staff."
Friday CMS senior staff will spend the day in schools to show support for staff. PTA leaders say next year they will make National Education Week in CMS bigger.
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