To the editor:
I must respond to the letter written by Barbara Paris regarding teachers (Public Forum, April 16). Ms. Paris bashed teachers as overpaid, poorly dressed, lacking in skills and education, and “not deserving of respect.” Well.
I am not a teacher but freely proclaim that I owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to those stalwart individuals who saw beyond the brash young man and nurtured an intellect to maturity. Mr. Elliot, my fourth-grade teacher at Wyandanch Elementary, I salute you. You taught me that the space between my ears was more than a hat rack.
Mr. Sweetland, my physics teacher at Chaffey High School, I survived you. Seriously, five classes of students could only merit two A grades? I worked my rear off for one of them, and learned much as a result. Kudos to you. Roger, my college degree counselor at Antioch, thanks for teaching me to just say thanks to praise and not hide my intellect behind a facade of coolness.
Teachers are among the lowest-paid professions in their educational category. They labor for love and commitment. They nurture and prepare our children to inherit the future. They are owed our respect and have earned our gratitude.
Ms. Paris, I suggest you consider those teachers that furthered your education and submit that without those teachers you would not have been able to demonstrate your deplorable ignorance with such clarity and persuasiveness.