I woke up earlier than usual that Monday, March 10th, to post my blog entry, send out the e-mail to my colleagues, shared with friends on Facebook, and donated to my own cause. I used my brother's account to get on the board as well. Two down, 23 to go! At the end of the day, a few coworkers donated, even the principal! I looked on the leader board and noticed a school had already had close to 40 donors. Any hopes of the three grand prizes were shattered. Still, I focused on getting the $1,000 gift card to use for my school's library.
I decided to ask them for help. I stated my cause, the goal I set, and sat back nervously waiting for a reply. The response of the Offtopic community was amazing. All of the posters were very supportive of the cause and teachers. The post was stickied to the front page for everyone to see. The goal of 25 donors was quickly accomplished. But people were still willing to donate.
· 64 donors tallied
· At least $1,280 raised for my classroom
· $3,000 DonorsChoose.org gift card obtained
· 33 students directly impacted
· 5 out of 6 projects fully funded
1. Beyond the Block: Commanding Our Construction
2. Keeping Pre-K Eggcited
3. "Science Isn't About Why! It's About Why Not!?"
4. Establishing An Award Winning Library for Pre-K
5. Let There Be Light (Table)!
· 1 project (Move to Improve!) nearly funded
· 1 truly grateful teacher
As much as I enjoyed receiving those donation e-mails, I enjoyed reading the kind messages left by the donors on the project page even more. One particular comment was very thought provoking. It made me think about the whole reason of actively participating in the challenge. The message was left by William Wong of California. Here was the exchange below.
William Wong: "Many teachers are not well supported. If it is the community that needs to step in, then so be it. I hope my small donation can combine with others to make a small dent."
Andy Yung: "Thank you, William. The community showing appreciation and supporting teachers and education is one thing, but I think if the whole country show support through this organization, it will open many eyes. People will begin to see what we value as high priority. Your donation, whether it is big or small, will go a long way towards impacting my classroom. But the bigger picture is help change public education. I thank you very much for taking part in this challenge. Not just to help me, but teachers, schools, and children everywhere." Politicians can say that education is important, and that if they are elected, they promise to make great changes. Yet, once elected, nothing happens. Organizations such as DonorsChoose give people the opportunity to take action and show everyone what they consider to be a high priority. Donations, big or small, go a long way to helping teachers and classrooms in need. They are taking part in the challenge of changing public education. I am proud to be a teacher and very fortunate for DonorsChoose and the donors who have supported me through it.
I stated that I was a bit hesitant about posting this request on Offtopic. One of the biggest reasons is probably because of the stories I hear about how teachers are poorly treated and viewed by their administrators, parents, ignorant people, policy makers, and politicians.
The support of my friends, family, colleagues, and the people of OT have proved otherwise. So many people showed appreciation through kind words and actions through this challenge. I feel like a broken record saying this so many times, but it cannot be said enough. Thank you so much! Your appreciation and support means so much to a 2nd year teacher who absolutely loves his career.