Showing teachers and staff how much they are missed

Ciavarra Elementary and Devine Intermediate faculty and staff were surprised during Teacher Appreciation Week after families came together to purchase yard signs as a tangible show of support.

Amber Stricker, whose daughter is in 1st grade, said she was trying to come up with a way to show her daughter’s teacher she was missed when she was inspired by yard signs made for Devine’s Class of 2020. After contacting a local shop about making a sign for her daughter’s teacher, Stricker said she reached out to a group of moms to see if they wanted to do the same thing for their children’s teachers.

“They all responded with ‘yes, that’s a great idea,’ and then another mom said, ‘do you think we can get enough money to get all the teachers one?’” Stricker said. “I’m a girl who likes a challenge, so I said yeah, I am pretty sure I can.”

Stricker’s initial sign order quickly increased from a single sign to 74, and she created a Facebook event to tag as many parents as possible.

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“I explained what I wanted to do and shared a picture of a sign I had found online,” Stricker said. “I asked them if they would like to purchase their teacher a yard sign or donate towards the purchase of a sign or signs.”

Stricker asked for the plan to be shared, and it continued to grow.

“My phone went crazy,” Stricker said. “It was amazing. People were donating for multiple signs.”

The venture was so successful that it expanded from core teachers to Specials teachers, instructional aides, and other staff and faculty.

Stricker and a group of moms set up the signs at the elementary and intermediate campuses and shared photos and videos on social media.

“[Teachers] commented that this was the greatest thing ever since they haven’t been able to see most of the kids since we left for Spring Break back in March,” Stricker said.

The signs feature each teacher’s name, campus, and the message that “an amazing teacher lives here!” Teachers are encouraged to put the signs in their front yards so that passers-by can honk to show their support.

“I didn’t do this by myself,” Stricker said. “Our community pulled together to show our teachers and staff how much we missed them. I just had the idea.”

By Marly Davis

Staff Writer