Editorial: Great teachers - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Editorial: Great teachers

The following is an editorial from FOX6 WBRC-TV General Manager Lou Kirchen, first aired on Tuesday, August 7, 2012:

So many of us have had that one teacher who, more than any other, inspired us;  who believed in us; who changed us in some way.  

Fox 6's Sarah Verser has been following the story of a young teacher determined to give his students the learning experience of a lifetime. Wyatt Smith, an inspired and inspiring teacher …in  anchor Sarah  Verser's  words, "…a teacher, on fire…" decided his Carver High School social studies students needed to "experience active citizenship in a global context"  by studying abroad in China.  There was no school funding for such a trip.  But determined, Mr. Smith used social media to raise the money needed.  While in China, the students were immersed in the Chinese culture, attending classes and learning the Mandarin language.

The trip was about so much more than just the chance to see another country or to learn about another culture.  In fact, each student adopted a guiding principle that would form the basis for their trip experience.   One student said hers was to become a better, stronger woman.  Another said his was to be mindful of his blessings.  Another young man said his was to become a better man by remembering that life is choice driven and by taking ownership of his decisions.

This trip provided a life changing opportunity for young people who but for the determination, dedication and 'fire' of a teacher, would never have had the opportunity.

For weeks, we have been talking about all of the discord related to who is or should be running Birmingham Schools.  From an outsider's or even a student's perspective is must be very confusing.  Instead, It's great to be talking about  the actual learning experience.

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