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Preschool Teacher Award

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Now that the kids are on winter break, are you appreciating their preschool teachers even more? I know I am. I keep wondering how my son’s teacher is able to corral 20 children into circle time, criss-cross applesauce, button lipped with a smile. And they love her. Not to mention all of the knowledge and social skills they gain in her classroom.

If you’d like to recognize your child’s preschool teacher here in Los Angeles, here’s your chance via LA Universal Preschools (LAUP).

LAUP decided six years ago to recognize teachers for their critical work and created the Annual Preschool Teacher of the Year award. The nomination deadline has just been extended to January 6 — so parents still have time to nominate a great teacher.

The award winner, who will be announced in April, will win $2,000.

To nominate a great teacher, visit LAUP’s website at www.laup.net

One interesting item to note: Teachers at the preschool level are among the lowest paid occupation. They make an average of $32,000 while prison guards make $72,000. Shouldn’t we value the people who foster our children’s education as much as we do the ones who vow to keep them locked up? After all, research shows that children who attend preschool are more likely to get better jobs, and less likely to use drugs or be arrested. That’s an entirely different topic. But it’s nice to know that LAUP is at least stepping up to give them the recognition (and some extra $$) they so willingly deserve.

Since only one teacher will win the award, there are other ways to show your appreciation. Give your child’s teacher a movie gift card, a box of candy or supplies for the classroom. Even a nice thank you card can make a teacher feel valued for the hard work they do every day.

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