Kristen Bell supports teachers: they spend 8 hours a day with our children

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As Hecate mentioned in the story about Amy Poehler yesterday, all three of us are the children of public school teachers. My brother is a teacher too! It’s impressive when you think about it. It’s also impressive, as a parent, to consider the amount of work that teachers put in with our kids every day. Sure they get good vacations and decent hours, but it really is a thankless, underpaid job. Teachers also don’t have enough supplies and often have to buy their own. Kristen Bell knows this and has been highlighting teachers on her social media who could use a hand. In an appearance on Access Live Kristen talked about her initiative and they brought on a teacher she’d helped! It was a surprise to both Kristen and the teacher and it was heartwarming actually. I’m putting some of the quotes below and you can also watch the video at the end of this post.

Teachers are the true celebrities
Kristen: They’re raising the generation. If we can’t support the people that are spending eight hours a day with our children… eight hours with my children, that’s my max. On Saturday and Sunday my husband and I do tap out. We’re talking about a teacher who spends all day with your kids, who is interested, who is pulling out their own checkbooks to provide things to the class.

Add 30 more kids on top of yours. We have Sarah Valdez, one of the teachers, backstage
Kristen: Why didn’t you tell me?

What did that mean to you what Kristen Bell did? Getting everything for your classroom.
Teacher Sarah Valdez: It has made it so I can be the best teacher for my kids. It’s my first year teaching so I’m starting from zero. I just didn’t realize how much teachers actually provide on their own. So just getting all the things helped relieve that stress.

You have said [on social media] our teachers should not have to fund the classroom from their own pocket
Kristen: I got this idea from Busy Philipps. Somebody thought of it. I saw this idea, featured teacher. With Amazon you can create a list of things you need. Busy posted it and I [did] it every week because my fans are so generous. Every Friday I post featured teacher Friday. Then I post their Amazon wish list.

After that they had a video of the kids from Ms. Valdez’s classroom thanking Kristen and it was so sweet! For all you can say about Kristen, she cares deeply and does try to help. She’s got over 10 million followers on Instagram and this is a great way to leverage that instead of just through sponcons or free vacations. Now I want to watch The Good Place again, I haven’t been keeping up with it.

Here’s that video:

at arrivals for Hello Bello Baby Product Launch for Walmart Hosted by Mamarazzi, The Wilson NYC, New York, NY February 25, 2019. Photo By: Kristin Callahan/Everett Collection

Photos credit: Getty, Avalon.red and Instagram

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22 Responses to “Kristen Bell supports teachers: they spend 8 hours a day with our children”

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  1. Slowsnow says:

    My mum was a teacher. (She’s retired now.) Never complained once. Not a single time have I heard her complain about her job. She loved it – but I also love what I do and I complain. Never heard a single racist, sexist, classist remark from her. On the contrary she gets super pissed off when the press calls our cigana comunity (Roma) drug dealers; she hates racism and dealt with a lot of immigrant families who had completelyy different family structures (aunts and uncles raisining kids) etc and never mocked them. On the contrary, she praised them for being resilient but not in a condescending manner at all. She is super annoying on a personal level but boy do I admire her as a professional.

  2. OriginalLala says:

    Both my parents are retired high school teachers – we need to be supporting teachers alot more. So many news reports in Canada have been coming out saying that teachers are seeing a huge rise in violence/bullying/harassment towards teachers by students and no one -not the administration, not the parents and not the school board – is helping them out at all.

  3. anp says:

    Yes, Teachers should be paid well according to their Academic Degrees.

  4. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    Equality and education. If these don’t mean everything to you, you’re doing life wrong. Imho.

    • Valiantly Varnished says:

      Agree 100%. Because when you think about it – almost everything in life springs from those two things.

  5. Anna says:

    “Decent hours” – depends a lot on the school district. I left teaching last June because I was working 50-60 hours a week, including weekends. I was provided two different textbooks but four different courses to teach, so I spent a lot of time writing my own lessons and creating my own materials. I tried to supplement with TeachersPayTeachers but that got expensive, and as is common now, I was also buying supplies for my classroom.

    I now have a job where I work 40 hours a week and the pay is better. I don’t know how I did it, looking back.

  6. Becks1 says:

    I think part of the issue with the teaching profession is that it is one of the few where people think that because there are benefits, it means people shouldn’t be paid what they are worth, or they should have to fund their work supplies out of their own pockets. My older son has a student teacher this year who is leaving today and we are donating school supplies to help her set up her classroom next year, which is nice for the class to do but it would be REALLY nice if she got some sort of “start up fund” from the district or something, because I just bought stuff for her, we didn’t have a specific list or anything, so I hope I got stuff she can use.

    It’s really the only job I can think of where people think that because of the benefits, they don’t get to complain about it, or they shouldn’t ask for more. I’m a government employee so I get some of that criticism aimed at me, but nowhere near the level that teachers do.

    I volunteer weekly with my first grader’s class and I can tell you, I could not do what those teachers do. And last year, when he was in K, I definitely left the classroom each time just thinking “yeah you all are saints.” but being a saint doesn’t mean you shouldn’t get paid.

  7. TheHufflepuffLizLemon says:

    Teachers are freaking heroes. My son is in public school in a really good, well funded school district and they are still buying things out of their own pocket while keeping 22 7 year olds on task. 😳 I was in his classroom yesterday for 30 minutes and almost lost my mind-and she’s tough, organized, beloved, and respected. It’s just organized chaos to try to keep that many kids going in the same direction-and she has the gifted class.

    I don’t have tons of time to donate, but I will always give money when asked, and supplies whenever I get a list-teachers deserve way more than they ever get.

  8. Call_me_al says:

    Saints, all of them who not just put up with, but love and educate, my chikdren!

  9. Juju says:

    I have always felt strongly even before having kids that teachers in this country need to be paid much more. They play a crucial role in our society and are accountable for so much beyond just teaching reading & writing. Pay goes hand in hand with supply & demand for talent. And a shout out to teachers in underserved communities who have an even harder job with less resources, all while being paid significantly less than their counterparts in more affluent areas. If we could provide the right resources and pay teachers appropriately across every district in America, it would change our country for the better.

    • Esmom says:

      Preach! I have known some young people who were my kids’ coaches and camp counselors, who have a gift with kids and would be great teachers. Each one (except one that I can think of) has chosen to pursue business instead. More corporate drones are NOT what our country needs.

  10. Esmom says:

    This warms my heart. Some of the best people I have known, many of whom I’m lucky to call friends, are teachers. The bad rap they tend get, primarily from conservatives, makes my blood boil to no end.

    We have a group of tea party types in my town who live to demonize teachers and the school district and over the past 10 years their efforts to undermine them with austerity measures have, not shockingly, hurt performance vs help it. Thank goodness the residents have woken up the past couple election cycles and are slowly replacing these guys with progressives and women. this year we elected more women than the board has had in 12 years.

  11. paranormalgirl says:

    Anyone who put up with my spawn for hours a day (and wasn’t related to them) deserves not only a pay increase, but sainthood.

  12. elimaeby says:

    I have to admit, Ms. Bell is really growing on me these days, oversharing and all.

  13. Lena says:

    Oh man, I’m getting teary eyed reading some of these posts. Thank you. I’m a teacher who is nearing the end of my career (off today because of flooding in the district) and I wonder can I really leave because as hard as it is (good hours ha! After school and weekends spent grading and lesson planning, summer is teaching summer school and required continuing education credits to obtain),I truly love it and can’t imagine doing anything else. I’ll probably start subbing once I retire. I always felt sorry not for me but those I know who make much more but hate their jobs.

  14. HRH says:

    Thank you all for your support! It’s really nice to hear, especially when there is so much negativity towards teachers out there. As a teacher I just have to second that we really do spend so much out of pocket on our classrooms. I got hired for my first teaching job during the recession and my school had literally no money for me to set up my room, not even a stapler. I spent thousands of dollars for the first few years.

    In terms of the benefits that teachers supposedly get, I also have to throw out, that yes, we do get vacation time (but definitely make up the hours throughout the school year working evenings and weekends most of the time). In addition to that, my district doesn’t cover my health benefits completely nor does it give me any extra for my daughter’s insurance, so my husband (also a teacher) and I pay close to $800 out of pocket a month for our health care. We also don’t receive any paid maternity or paternity leave.

    My husband and I both have our M.A.s in addition to our credentials and went to very well regarded schools. We can get bitter at times because our close friends all make much, much more than us and get to do things like work from home and take long lunches (and use the bathroom whenever they want!). But, ultimately, we are both very proud of what we do and hope that we are making a difference.

  15. Als Em says:

    Decent hours?? I’m a Teacher (career change) and I have never worked so hard in my life. I am in by 7:45 and out by 5:30. When I get home and after I put my son to bed, I work up at midnight! Lunch… is that a thing? I haven’t had lunch in weeks. The day will pass and I will think shit I haven’t even drank any water or gone to the bathroom. I have just been running on adrenaline.

    Those time off are a godsend because you get extremely burnt out. You really have to be a teacher or have a family member who is one, to realise that good working hrs and long holidays are a myth.

    But I have never been happier. I love my 28 kids and plus my 12 from my book club that I do at lunch. I just wish teachers are given the respect and monetary essentials they deserve.

    • Dazed and confused says:

      Are you a new(er) teacher? I found that my hours were sooooo long the first several years. Now, 15 years in, I know what I am doing and I am more efficient. Still not short hours by any means, but not quite as exhausting as when I started. Plus, I laugh every day at work from something one of my students says. When you get to see a kiddo “get it” and have that “ah-ha” moment?? The BEST!!

      I mentioned below, long holidays are not actually holidays. They are non-contract, unpaid time. And you are so right. Teachers need serious recharge time. It takes a lot of energy – mental and physical.

      So glad you are loving teaching!!

  16. Lucy2 says:

    I love this! What a great way to use her social media platform.

    My whole family works/worked in schools, as do many of my friends. One taught art to hundreds of kids a week- even in a good district the budget was never enough.

  17. Dazed and confused says:

    Teachers getting lots of vacation time is a big misconception. Summers are unpaid. Most teachers elect to have their 10 month salaries divided into 12 months because they do not get paid over the summer and many of them have to get summer jobs. More and more, districts have an expectation that teachers will also work over the summer — and most spend lots of their summer preparing for the next year — even though this is unpaid time. Teachers caring nature is often taken advantage of with a culture of “it’s for the children, so you need to make sacrifices.”

  18. Ann says:

    If I volunteer at my kids school for a few hours i’m exhausted. I don’t know how the teachers do a full day. They have incredible bladder control and I never see them sit and eat. They are superheros!