California Educator

August/September 2021

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CAMPBELL: Feeling love and community J E N N I F E R P H I L L I P S enjoyed support from her school community at a time when she desperately needed it. "Campbell School of Innovation did an amazing job support- ing teachers during these very trying times," says the Campbell Elementary Teachers Association member. " The Parent Teacher Organization is phenomenal. From time to time, encouraging notes were placed in my box with heartfelt words of appreciation that were specific to me, not rubber stamps. Parents sent encouraging words of appreciation and gifts, and took turns providing lunch, Starbucks cards and classroom donations. The district held monthly raffles for wellness baskets, encouraging us to share our own stories of self-care." The support made all the difference, says the fifth grade teacher. " There were many times that prepping for the next day went late into the night, and it was really touching to receive genuine appreciation from parents, colleagues and district personnel, acknowledging how hard we were working. It made me feel that even though times were extremely tough, I could go on." During online learning, a parent expressed appreciation and asked if there was anything needed to make the job easier. When Phillips mentioned that her chair was uncomfortable, the parent, to her amazement, sent a comfy chair to her house as a gift. She was very touched. "For me it's not just about the gifts; it's about the thoughtfulness and appreciation of the hard work teachers are doing," says Phillips. " Teacher SEL is just as important as student SEL. You can't be there for others if no one is there for you." "Teacher SEL is just as important as student SEL. You can't be there for others if no one is there for you." —JENNIFER PHILLIPS, Campbell Elementary Teachers Association Fifth grade teachers Lauren Ensor and Jennifer Phillips with the latter's student teacher Laura Henao. "We were super supportive of each other, and I adore them!" says Phillips. 27 A U G U S T / S E P T E M B E R 2 0 21 Jennifer Phillips

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