Preparation is

Especially when it comes to readying our kids for tomorrow’s challenges.

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There’s one group of people you an always count on to
champion our public schools.


Even after decades of being asked to do more and more with less and less, they still

see the bigger picture.

That every school, every class, every child, every dream deserves an equal chance.

Sometimes, that takes educators digging into their own pockets for school supplies.

Other times, it takes spending their summer break researching new and more effective ways to engage and

inspire learners.

One thing it always takes is what brought educators into the classroom in the first place: A simple passion for helping students be all they can be.

We talked to several educators to see how they’re preparing for this year.

Here's What We Heard:


They’re an unusual back-to-school purchase, Michelle Munger admits. But if they make her students more comfortable, the time – and money – she spent trying to find them this summer is more than worth it.

It’s weird, but it works.

Tiffany Dittrich discovered that if she showed her "quirks," students could too, and then everybody could just relax. And learn.

You’re welcome.

It's a lesson that all the other lessons are based on, Heather Bakke says. And so, she makes sure that nobody in her classroom misses it.

A towering role model.

He keeps the classrooms and hallways orderly. But Darringer Funches is also a bridge.

Home sweet classroom.

It’s not just Chad Benesh’s classroom. It’s his students’, too. Which means, everybody has a hand in making it feel like home.

No pencil? No problem.

One thing hasn’t changed for Daniel Honigs after 22 years of teaching: His annual back-to-school shopping trips. Not for him but for students.

The lost art of listening.

Getting students to think critically in these “binary days” is Liz Wright’s challenge as a college professor. That process starts, she says, not between our ears, but through them.

Don’t just sit there, bounce.

Seventh graders are bouncy, Virginia Mancini says. Her lessons this year will be, too.

A pandemic positive.

Turns out, online learning has some advantages, says Ternesha Burroughs. Among them: You can log in and share your world from anywhere.

Here’s where YOU come in.

Our students’ mental health needs are growing. Help for them, unfortunately, is not, says Melissa Buckley. Support the lawmakers who support public education.