Now This Is A Teacher





Veteran Phil Juby submitted the following story to us and it is appropriate to post on our website for other to read and pass on.





Although this is an American true story, it is relevant to Canada as well.

In September  of 2005, on the first day of school, Martha Cothren, a History teacher  at Robinson High School in  Little Rock , did something not to be  forgotten.  On the first day of school, with the permission of the  school superintendent, the principal and the building supervisor, she  removed all of the desks in her classroom. When the first period kids  entered the room they discovered that there were no desks.   
‘Ms. Cothren, where are our desks?’

She  replied, ‘You can’t have a desk until you tell me how you earn the right  to sit at a desk.’  They  thought, ‘Well, maybe it’s our grades.’  ‘No,’ she  said.  ‘Maybe  it’s our behavior.’ She told them, ‘No, it’s not even your  behavior.’

And so,  they came and went, the first period, second period, third period. Still  no desks in the classroom. Kids called their parents to tell them what  was happening and by early afternoon television news crews had started  gathering at the school to report about this crazy teacher who had taken  all the desks out of her room.

The  final period of the day came and as the puzzled students found seats on  the floor of the desk-less classroom. Martha Cothren said, ‘Throughout  the day no one has been able to tell me just what he or she has done to  earn the right to sit at the desks that are ordinarily found in this  classroom. Now I am going to tell you.’

At this  point, Martha Cothren went over to the door of her classroom and opened  it. Twenty-seven (27) U.S. Veterans, all in uniform, walked into that  classroom, each one carrying a school desk. The Vets began placing the  school desks in rows, and then they would walk over and stand alongside  the wall. By the time the last soldier had set the final desk in place  those kids started to understand, perhaps for the first time in their  lives, just how the right to sit at those desks had been  earned.

Martha  said, ‘You didn’t earn the right to sit at these desks. These heroes did  it for you. They placed the desks here for you. They went halfway around  the world, giving up their education and interrupting their careers and  families so you could have the freedom you have. Now, it’s up to you to  sit in them. It is your responsibility to learn, to be good students, to  be good citizens. They paid the price so that you could have the freedom to get an education. Don’t ever forget it.’  

By the  way, this is a true story. And this teacher was awarded the Veterans of  Foreign Wars Teacher of the Year for the State of  Arkansas in 2006. She is the daughter of a  WWII POW.