May 9, 2023

A Giant Thank You to Our Teachers!

Emily Fox Director of Jewish Educational Initiatives

I am a morning person and am in bed before 10 p.m. most nights. But last Sunday night I was up late baking like crazy for the amazing teachers at my daughter’s synagogue early childhood center. I was not the only one, by the end of the day on Monday, my dining room table was filled with dozens of cookies, brownies, banana bread slices, and more! All to bring “sweets and treats” for the teachers on Tuesday. 

Our early childhood centers, day schools, and congregational schools are celebrating our amazing educators during Teacher Appreciation Week (officially May 8-12, though some celebrated May 1-5). Do our educators deserve our appreciation every day? Absolutely! And I hope many of you share the sentiments of gratitude I try to express with my children’s teachers on a regular basis, not just once a week. Yet, it is still so fun and so special to spend a week shouting how amazing they are from the rooftops! 

As in years past, Federation is part of this celebration! This year we awarded more than 50 mini-grants to early childhood centers and congregational schools who have big plans for honoring their teachers. Many will host fancy breakfasts or luncheons, some are bringing in an ice cream truck or coffee cart, others will give personalized gift baskets including a “spa basket” for teachers to have a nice relaxing evening after a long day of teaching! One school told us they hosted a fancy tea party (pictured here) and sent home a wellness tea gift with each teacher.  

To show our appreciation of our wonderful day school teachers at Golda Och Academy, Gottesman RTW Academy, The Jewish Educational Center/Bruriah High School, and Joseph Kushner Hebrew Academy/Rae Kushner Yeshiva High School, the Day School Initiative will bring coffee to each school between now and the end of the school year. This is just one way we will be saying thank you to our teachers between now and our Quest Conference on November 7.

We are grateful to partner not only with the administration of our schools, but also the parent committees, who, in many cases, drive the planning for this week and beyond. Temple Sharey Tefilo – Israel is one of the schools that celebrated a week early. Alyssa Kane, chair of their Early Childhood Parent Board, shared, “Teacher appreciation week has been a success… we love our teachers and love showering them with the love they deserve! We really appreciate Federations help in making this possible.”  

Federation is proud to join parents and administrators in expressing our deep gratitude for the important and amazing gift of education our teachers provide. Every day they create a nurturing environment where our children think, learn, play, socialize, pray, and contribute to the Jewish and general community. If you know a teacher, be sure to give them an extra loud thank you this week!