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National Teacher Day honors America’s teachers

NEA’s Teacher Appreciation Week kicks off today

WASHINGTON - May 07, 2012 -

Throughout National Teacher Week, May 7-11, thousands of communities across the country take time to express their gratitude to local educators and to acknowledge the crucial role teachers play in ensuring that every student receives a quality education. This year, the National Education Association teamed up with Parenting magazine for two groundbreaking projects that highlight teachers’ dedication to their profession and their students.

“On May 8, National Teacher Day, NEA and its more than 3 million members are saluting teachers, America’s heroes, for making public schools great for every child,” said NEA President Dennis Van Roekel. “We are thrilled that Parenting has joined us in recognizing the efforts of the highly qualified, caring and committed teachers in our nation’s classrooms.”

NEA partnered with Parenting magazine on the My Amazing Teacher campaign to honor teachers for their unwavering passion, dedication, and commitment to educating America’s children. For the campaign, members of the public were invited to celebrate a teacher who changed their life by uploading a video thank-you message on the Parenting web site. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, New York Yankee Mark Teixeira and other notables contributed videos recalling their own “Amazing Teacher.” Students, past and present, can upload their video thank you at

NEA also teamed up with Parenting on an innovative joint survey of 1,000 public school parents and educators that explored the roadblocks to effective parent-teacher communication. When parents were asked to “grade” their relationship with their child’s teachers, nearly half (45 percent) gave the teachers an “A,” with the majority on both sides categorizing the relationship as “great” and “open.”

The results were announced in a panel discussion at Parenting’s Mom Congress on Education and Learning, a three-day event in Washington, D.C., held April 29-May 1, to celebrate and connect parents who have made a difference in the fight for better schools. To learn more about Mom Congress and the survey results visit

NEA is recognizing the consistently outstanding work of teachers during National Teacher Day (Tuesday, May 8) and Teacher Appreciation Week (May 7-11) in other ways, too:

  • National Teachers Hall of Fame
    The National Teachers Hall of Fame recognizes and honors exceptional career teachers, encourages excellence in teaching, and preserves the rich heritage of America’s teaching profession. This year’s five inductees will be honored at a reception at NEA with NEA President Dennis Van Roekel and Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on National Teacher Day. These outstanding educators include NEA member Deborah Lynn Tackmann, a Wisconsin health education teacher; David Brock, a Maryland science teacher; member James Brooks, a North Carolina English teacher; member Scott Charlesworth-Seiler, a fifth-grade teacher in Illinois; and Glenn Lid, who teaches chemistry in Minnesota. Sponsors of the event include the Pearson Foundation, Bank of America, Security Benefit Corporation, AT&T and The NEA Foundation.
  • 5 Days, 5 Ways Teacher Giveaway
    Throughout Teacher Appreciation Week (May 7-11), the Teaching Channel is celebrating with a 5 Days, 5 Ways Giveaway to thank educators for all their hard work. Teaching Channel is giving away more than 200 thank-you gifts throughout the week, finishing up with a Friday Grand Prize for a weekend getaway at a Kimpton Hotel property! Visit the 5 Days, 5 Ways Giveaway web page for more information.
  • Nominate a Classroom Superhero!
    They don’t have the cape or the flashy tights, but educators are rising to superhero challenges every single day. Few people have as much impact as educators on all of our lives, and the lives of our children. NEA’s Classroom Superheroes campaign allows parents, students, and community members to give educators the credit they deserve. Find out more about nominating your classroom superheroes.

National Teacher Day has been celebrated since 1953 when Eleanor Roosevelt first proposed that Congress set aside a day to acknowledge the work of educators. Since 1985, NEA has celebrated National Teacher Day on the Tuesday of the first full week of May. For more information on National Teacher Day visit

“Teachers are the nation’s heroes—they motivate and inspire young minds and enable students to achieve extraordinary things,” said NEA President Van Roekel. “I want to thank all of America’s teachers, who work every day with students of every age, from pre-K through graduate school, for their hard work, enthusiasm, and commitment to making a real difference in students’ lives.”

Visit for more information on National Teacher Day.
Join the National Teacher Week conversation on Twitter with #thankateacher
Watch the My Amazing Teacher online tributes to teachers
Follow us on twitter at

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The National Education Association is the nation's largest professional employee organization, representing more than 3 million elementary and secondary teachers, higher education faculty, education support professionals, school administrators, retired educators and students preparing to become teachers.

CONTACT: Celeste Busser  (202) 822-7823,