• Sat. May 14th, 2022

Letters: Support teachers, support staff

ByJulie J. Helfer

Mar 18, 2022

Our teachers and our schools are getting a lot of negative attention. And in the midst of sterile debates about how our school board works and the curriculum our schools teach, there is a crisis.

From a story by Chalkbeat Indiana on IBJ.com [“‘Nearing a collapse,’ Indiana needs more special educators,” March 11], our schools are struggling to fill vacancies in special education. The article goes on to cite statistics from the Indiana Department of Education which show that the number of special education teachers in Indiana has decreased by 4% from 2014 to 2021, while the number of students in special education increased by 12% during the same period.

Our students, parents, teachers, caregivers and special education support staff are near and dear to my heart. COVID has made it harder for parents and guardians as our schools transitioned to virtual learning.

I come from a family of teachers. Teaching is a lifetime commitment. Our teachers are poorly paid and often suffer from burnout due to the multiple roles they have to play. We should consider how our public discourse affects their morale. Please take a moment to thank our teachers at Carmel Clay School for their dedication to educating our children.

Finally, Carmel Clay Schools is accepting nominations through March 18 for CCS Support Staff of the Year. It takes a village to raise a child. Please consider nominating a support staff member at https://bit.ly/supportccs2022

–Sheldon Barnes