Yesterday, we at The Herald had the unfortunate duty of reporting on the death of Heather Dobbins, a 37-year-old ESOL teacher at Richmond Drive Elementary. She drowned this weekend while tubing with her husband and friends in Pickens County.
We spoke with the principal at Richmond Drive and several people within the district office who had known Heather since she started working for the district back in 2010. She was, by all accounts, a wonderful teacher and a fantastic person. Her loss, we were told, will take a huge toll on the Richmond Drive community because she was such an instrumental part of the lives of so many students and their families.
As the first day of school approaches, take a moment to think about the teachers in your students' lives. Think about the impact and the power educators have every day on students in their classrooms. Teachers can be a lot more than the person that delivers information in the front of rooms across the world. They can be coaches, mentors, surrogate parents, even friends. In some cases, your child's teacher will spend more time each day with your child than you will!
So remember them, as the first day approaches. Think of the work they're doing to prepare for a new year and remember the potential for new growth and learning they represent, because, unfortunately, you never know when they might be taken away, leaving broken hearts and lives that have been forever changed, in their wake.