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Teacher Appreciation Week

A word from our Executive Director in honor of Teacher Appreciation Week

As we close Teacher Appreciation Week, we wanted to share a word from Danny Knee, CIC’s Executive Director and a former teacher (pictured on the left).

“Teaching is still the best job I ever had. Some years after I left the classroom, I saw a YouTube video of Taylor Mali, a Brooklyn-based teacher at the time, delivering a slam poem entitled “What Teacher’s Make.” I wish I had seen it before I left teaching. The slam poem and Mr. Mali’s powerful delivery has a well-earned self-righteous anger about it. The poem also reflects what I saw from the overwhelming majority of my deeply committed colleagues during my six years in the classroom.” 

“As the son of a lifelong educator, I saw what teaching gave to my dad… and what it took from him after 35 years. And I had to admit to myself at the ripe old age of 28, with a fair amount of guilt and shame, that I did not have what it took to be a teacher for my career. The overwhelming majority of those who think teachers have it easy have never stepped into a classroom. Teaching as a profession, and the individuals who dedicate their lives to education (again, if you haven’t taught, save your criticisms for someone who doesn’t know what I know), deserve our unwavering thanks and praise – especially as we ask them to navigate nearly impossible circumstances none could have imagined, none were trained for, and none are properly compensated for.

President Franklin D. Roosevelt once remarked presciently that education is, in fact, the safeguard of democracy. Teachers and educators face a daunting, if not impossible, task especially given our current political climate. And there is no job that is as important to the functioning of our society and democracy.

Thank you, Mrs. Pamplin, Mrs. Anderson, Mr. Nicholson, Mr. Lighty, Ms. Meyers, Mr. Bacchus, among many others for caring more about my education than I probably did myself at the time, and for always caring so much for me.”

Danny Knee
Executive Director at CIC Tucson and former Teacher

though they say, “once a teacher, always a teacher…