Army Education News

Shaping Lives: Appreciating America’s Teachers

May 23, 2016

Students may be looking forward to putting their final exams behind them or starting their summer vacations, but there’s another important reason to celebrate in May: Teacher Appreciation Month.

There are few people who touch our lives the way teachers do. Apart from parents, teachers are students’ most influential source of knowledge and values. In fact, according to the USC Rossier School of Education, one teacher can impact more than 3,000 students over the course of his or her career.

In case you had any doubts that teachers have an incredible power to inspire, take a moment to consider this recent article from the Huffington Post. To help her students overcome any standardized test-day nervousness, a fifth grade teacher in New Jersey surprised her 19 students with personalized, inspiring notes handwritten on their desks with dry-erase markers before an important exam. Her motivational words,“I’m not telling you it’s going to be easy, but it is going to be worth it! Do your best!” made students smile and encouraged them to believe in the power of their own hard work.

Despite the importance of both professions to our lives, many Americans don’t realize that teachers and Soldiers share many common attributes. The U.S. Department of Defense does, however, and that’s why it launched the Troops to Teachers program in 1994. The program provides a path for former Soldiers, Marines, Airmen and Sailors who want to continue to serve others, and through Troops to Teachers, over 17,000 former servicemen and women have been hired nationally to teach in public schools. And they are well-prepared for the task: after all, the U.S. Army fosters many of the qualities that great teachers possess: leadership, dedication, and commitment to public service.

The Army has a deep appreciation for America’s tireless teachers and values their critical contribution to shaping our nation’s youth. This Teacher Appreciation Month, join the U.S. Army in saying “thank you” to a teacher in your life. 

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