To the editor of THE EAGLE:
As the anticipation mounted in the Sherman House moments before the start of Game 1 of the World Series where our beloved Red Sox would begin their quest versus the St. Louis Cardinals, I watched with pride and astonishment as my 9-year-old, Molly, sang the entire national anthem along with Mary J. Blige.
I asked her how she knew the whole song thinking to myself that my Father of the Year trophy would be coming soon because surely she’d heard me singing it before.
"I learned it in second grade with Ms. Harte. We sang it every day," she said with a "where have you been?" look on her face and eyebrows furled.
The national anthem before a baseball game has always given me goosebumps serving as a reminder of what’s right in this country and world. But seeing my daughter not only sing the words but also have an idea of what they meant was a tremendous feeling that I’ll not soon forget.
It was also a reminder that while the success of our schools has been relegated to statistics and bean-counting, the true measure will always be the influence that our teachers have in helping to mold the character of our children, eight hours a day, almost 200 days a year.
I can’t thank Julie Harte and all of the faculty and staff at Egremont Elementary School enough for the impact they have had on my children and many more over the years. They are a shining example of what the vocation of teaching has always been and the value it will always hold.
Our city continues to strive to provide the best education per the rules of the commonwealth and country by adhering to mandates and developing strong learning skills. But no chart can ever measure the effect of the daily encouragement and positive influence that our teachers have on our future.
Just when I thought the national anthem couldn’t hold more meaning, I learned a new lesson, from a teacher.
The writer is president of the Pittsfield City Council.