The article came out in the Sunday paper and folks have told me that it was good. I am still blown away by the fact that this even happened. I have received another response from our US Congressman, Rep. Peter Welch. I know that if we could generate enough letters acknowledging the great work that teachers do that we could change the tone of the debate. I recently read a blog by Larry Ferlazzo that comments on the decline in respect for teachers, while he points out that this is not scientific it is thought-provoking. “The Google Books Ngram Viewer allows users to search, compare, and graph word usage in hundreds of years of books including over 500 billion words. In this intriguing (though, admittedly, not scientific) graph, you can see that the phrase “blaming teachers” (in red) overtook “respecting teachers” (in blue) in about 1990.” The blog post is really worth reading.
Bolstered by the positive response from legislators, I will contact local schools again to see if they will participate in the 4Rs Project. I am also going to contact the VT PTA to see if there are avenues to reach parents directly. I would love to have hundreds of letters to send to our legislators, a real “yes Virginia, there is a Santa Clause” moment!
If anyone is interested in promoting the 4Rs Project in your area, please let me know.