Liz Aaronsohn, Ed.D. Associate Professor Emerita Teacher
To the Editor:
You would think that sometime within a 53-year teaching career, I’d have met a few Teachers of the Year.
Nope. Not until this past week, when I met the 2016 national Teacher of the Year, Ms. Jahana Hayes. Having read her platform as a candidate for Congress, and seen her on video, I was inspired by her commitment, thoughtfulness, ideas, directness, courage, resourcefulness and accomplishments. Last Wednesday morning, on a very busy schedule to get around to 41 towns, she showed up to thank the New Britain volunteers for our work on her behalf. I found her more approachable, even more thoughtful than I had realized. Not just talking points-real conversation! Clearly, what made Jahana national Teacher of the Year can make her an outstanding Congresswoman: she can research and learn; manage classrooms full of sometimes volatile and sometimes reluctant adolescents; inspire and energize them to stretch beyond what they thought they knew; get purposeful work done in a context of caring. Isn’t that exactly what we need in this US Congress-a teacher out there on that anarchic playground? To tame the bullies by helping “kids” problem-solve, think, collaborate, respect each other, listen to each other, learn from each other, see the larger picture? Someone like Jahana!
It’s time for a teacher in our government!