Gail Leary jokes about how emotional she will be when she leads her East Aurora pupils in song for the last time this Sunday. When I interviewed her for my column today, I suggested that she might want to stay away from the film "Mr. Holland's Opus" for a while.
But it's not a stretch to understand why she feels this way. Teachers develop a special bond with the children they spend time with. There's a reason they use the term "my kids" the same way a parent would about his or her own children.
We hope that teachers take such an intense interest in those young lives, because next to parents, no one spends more time with your children. And in many cases, the teacher might be the child's main role model.
I suspect that a lot of the people who come to East Aurora High School Sunday to say goodbye to Mrs. Leary will be there because of that connection.
So my question is: Did you have a teacher like that? What did he or she mean to you?
--- Bruce Andriatch