A Love Letter To Teachers

April 22, 2020

We hope you will join us in showing our gratitude to and solidarity with teachers here.

Dear Teachers,

You are our heroes. Every day of this pandemic, you have blown us away with your creativity, compassion, and commitment, your tenacity and heart. You have moved mountains to reach each child, wherever they are and despite the challenges that stand in your way. You’ve taught math classes while standing outside of homes, led online meditations to start the “school” day, created PE classes from your living room, filmed DIY science experiments, and found ways to check in with each kid. You’ve not only taught lessons; you have been our children’s lifeline to normalcy and stability, a tether and a point of connection. When Shonda Rhimes tweeted, “Been homeschooling a 6-year old and 8-year old for one hour and 11 minutes. Teachers deserve to make a billion dollars a year. Or a week,” she put into words the collective appreciation of the nation’s parents.

Here’s the secret you’ve known all along but is only now clear to the rest of us: It was always true.

As leaders deeply invested in the nonpartisan, multi-sector, national effort to prepare and support 100,000 excellent preK-12 STEM teachers by 2021, we salute you. In our living rooms and kitchens, our bedrooms and makeshift one-room schoolhouses, we are standing and cheering for all the world to hear: “We love you, teachers!”

Not because it’s easy or because you get it right every day. It isn’t, and you don’t. But you’ve chosen to get in the arena and stay there. You have managed, not just during this crisis but against the backdrop of the everyday grind, to bring joy in the midst of struggle. You have taught kids from history books and stories, legends and myths in which your names do not appear. But when we tell the story of this time, the work of teachers and what you have done to educate, inspire, and connect us all will be front and center.

Even as we add our names to this letter, we know that praise without action rings hollow. Your courage during this time strengthens our resolve to tackle the systemic issues that have made it difficult for so long to get and keep great teachers, especially for our least resourced schools and communities, and especially in STEM.

On behalf of our students and our country, we the undersigned pledge to link arms with you to bring the changes in salary and work conditions, professional support and development, classroom resources and leadership that you have dreamt of, so that you can continue to fuel the dreams of our country’s children. In these uncertain times, we will stand with you not just to protect progress that’s been made in communities across the country but to make even greater strides to recognize and value the essential role of teachers.

There is an ancient teaching that the world itself rests on the breath of children when they are learning. Across these great United States, communities understand more profoundly than ever before that our very existence depends on the work you are doing. We are so grateful.

We hope you will join us in showing our gratitude to and solidarity with teachers here.


Grace Doramus, Chief Innovation Officer
Guadalupe Carrasco, Administrative Coordinator
Joi Rae, Chief of Staff
Julie Paturzo, Senior Manager, Partner Engagement
Kate Isenberg, Manager, Data & Insights
Kendra Danowski, Community Designer & Manager
Lauren Baier, Community Designer & Manager
Mable Yiu, Community Coordinator
Mesha Byrd, Network Manager
Monique Hoeflinger, Director of Strategy
Pomai Verzon, Strategic Initiatives Manager
Talia Milgrom-Elcott, Executive Director and Founder
Vincent Baggett, Operations Coordinator
Yasmin Sabrina Fodil, Chief Program Officer

A. Peterson

Alec Macaulay, Director of School & District Partnerships, Out Teach

Alice H. Gilchrist, Coordinator, S2TEM Centers South Carolina

Amanda J. Smith, STEM Outreach Liaison, Penn State University

Ambika Kapur, Program Officer, Education, Carnegie Corporation of New York

Ann Wescott, Special Education Teacher, Region 12 Connecticut

Anne Gatling, Merrimack College

Ani Martinez, Field Director, Remake Learning

Anu Malipatil, Vice President, Education, Overdeck Family Foundation, Overdeck Family Foundation

Ashley Young, Science Education Program Manager, Amgen Foundation

Babette Moeller, Distinguished Scholar, EDC Center for Children and Technology

Barbara Hug, Teaching Associate Professor, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, College of Education

Bethany Orozco, Statewide Recruitment & Communications Director, EnCorps STEM Teachers Program

Bill Thornburgh, Executive Officer, American Modeling Teachers Association

Braeden Mayrisch, Director, Social Impact, Voya Financial

Brandy Skylling

Breanna Villena, Faculty Manager, Western Governors University

Brianna Donaldson, Director, Math Teachers’ Circle Network

Brienne Ericson, Mom of Two Kids, Thomas Paine PTA

Brooke Haley, Event Coordinator, Youth Code Jam

Brooke Higgins

Bryan and Emily Ayscue Hassel, Co-presidents, Public Impact – on behalf of the entire Public Impact staff

Carla Chaffin, eMINTS Instructional Specialist, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri

Cara Wylie, Program Coordinator, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri

Carly Baldwin, Teacher, Boyd County High School

Carlos León, Director Learning Design, Mouse

Carol L. Fletcher, Director, Expanding Pathways in Computing (EPIC), The University of Texas at Austin

Carolyn Landel, Associate Vice Provost for Academic Collaboration, University of Texas at Austin

Cassie Klein

Chalene Martinez

Charles King, Executive Director, Kansas City Teacher Residency

Chelsea Clinton, Vice Chair, Clinton Foundation

Christine Terry, Instructional Specialist and Parent, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri

Claire Wescott

Clea Matson, Teacher Professional Development, California Academy of Sciences

Colleen M Hinds-Rodgers, National Director of STEM, Teach for America

Corrie Canaday, Teachers College Program Portfolio Manager - STEM, Western Governors University

Cory A. Gavitt, Senior Instructor, University of Colorado Colorado Springs

Danielle Carnival, CEO, I AM ALS

Daisy Sharrock, Project Director, High Tech High Graduate School of Education

Darcy Moody, Advocacy and Program Development, Office of the Maricopa County School Superintendent

Debbie Reynolds, STEM Integration Specialist, Harrison Middle School/Baldwin-Whitehall School District

Debi Pfitzenmaier, Executive Director, Youth Code Jam

Deborah D. Sachs, Teach (STEM)³ Coordinator, University of Indianapolis

Dewayne Morgan, Director of Partnerships and Collaborations, University System of Maryland

Diana Cornejo-Sanchez, Director, HTH Teacher Center

Donna Taylor, Assistant Director of Professional Development, The STEM Education Center at Worcester Polytechnic Institute


Douglas Hodum

Dr. Aaron Popham, Interim Dean & Academic Vice President, Teachers College, Western Governors University

Dr. Lisa N. Duval, Superintendent, South Allegheny School District

Dr. Mary Urquhart, Associate Professor, University of Texas at Dallas

Dr. Nate Carnes, Associate Professor, University of South Carolina

Dr. Nicole Martin, Research Associate, University of Texas at Austin

Earl Legleiter, Director of Science and Mathematics Education Institute, Fort Hays State University

Eduardo Cetlin, President, Amgen Foundation

Eileen Yang, Senior Manager, Genentech, Inc.

Elena Lopez , Professional Development Manager, California Science Center

Ellen Frede, Senior Co-director, NIEER

Ellie Goldberg, Doctoral Student in STEM Education, The University of Texas at Austin

Elliot Ransom, Co-CEO, UChicago Impact

Emily Lyman, Sr. Manager, Western Governors University

Fernand Brunschwig, President, STEMteachersNYC (STEM Teachers of NYC, Inc.)

Frank Cortazzo, School Board Member, South Allegheny School District

Frank Niepold, Senior Climate Education Program Manager and Coordinator, NOAA Climate Program Office

Frederick W. Freking, Professor of Clinical Education, Rossier School of Education, University of Southern California

Frank W. Spencer IV, Principal and Lead Futurist, Kedge and The Futures School

Gay B Stewart, Director, Center for Excellence in STEM Education, West Virginia University

Ginger Duiven

Grant Garrison

Gregg Behr, Executive Director, The Grable Foundation

Guy Harrington, President, Teaching Channel

Hank Nourse, Chief Learning Officer, New York Academy of Sciences

Hannah MacNaughton, Student, University of Dubuque

Hannah Lakin, STEM Education Specialist, Maine Mathematics and Science Alliance

Heather Roche

Heather Sopp Farnan, First Grade Teacher, South Allegheny School District

Heidi Ragsdale

Heising-Simons Foundation

Helen Corveleyn, Elementary STEM Facilitator , Hopewell Elementary School

Infosys Foundation USA


Janet Stramel, Professor, Fort Hays State University

Jaqueline Cortez Wang, Senior Director, Strategic Partnerships, International Society for Technology in Education

Jean-Claude Brizard, Senior Advisor and Deputy Director, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Jeff Hawthorn

Jeff Kennedy, Instructional Specialist, Washington University in St. Louis Institute for School Partnership

Jen Foster, eMINTS Instructional Specialist, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri Columbia College of Education

Jennifer E. Carinci, Program Director, STEM Education Research, American Association for the Advancement of Science

Jennifer Gleason, Senior Educational Consultant, Teaching Matters

Jennifer Hicks, Director of K-12 STEM Engagement, Purdue University

Jennifer F Kuehnle,* eMINTS - University of Missouri*

Jennifer McCray, Associate Research Scientist, Erikson Institute’s Early Math Collaborative

Jennifer Urmson, Program Manager, Science is Elementary

Jeremy Ford, VP, Giving and Social Innovation, Dell Technologies

Jill Zeruth, Senior Manager, Teachers College, Western Governors University

Joe Spalding, Director, Initial Licensure Programs, Western Governors University

John Keller, Fiske Planetarium Director, University of Colorado, Boulder

John King, 10th U.S. Secretary of Education (Obama Administration) and President and CEO of The Education Trust

Josie Blue, Sr. Research Coordinator, San Diego Zoo Global

Joy Starks

Julie A. Evans, Ed.D., Chief Executive Officer, Project Tomorrow

Karen Willey, Naturalist, Climate Change Communications

Kate Blanchard, Managing Director, National Education Initiatives , Teach For America

Katherine Chen, Executive Director, STEM Education Center at Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Katherine Mangum, MS Science Teacher and FLL Coach, St. Catherine’s School

Katherine Wilcox, Executive Director, EnCorps STEM Teachers

Kathy Renfrew, Education Specialist Wade Institute for Science Education, Wade Institute for Science Education

Kerry Branch, Education Specialist, South Carolina’s Coalition for Mathematics & Science/S2TEM Centers SC

Kim Boutwell, Regional Giving Manager, Dell Technologies*

Kim Newman, Program Director, Murdock Charitable Trust

Kimberly Brenneman, Program Officer, Education, Heising-Simons Foundation

Kimberly DeMent, Director Advanced Programs Teachers College, Western Governors University

Kinkini Banerjee, Director, Community and Network, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

Kristy Wallace, CEO, Ellevate Network

Lauren Thompson Allen

Laura Mac

Laura M. Nickerson, Director of the STEM Teachers’ Collaborative, University of New Hampshire

Laura Wilding, aggieTEACH-Science Program Coordinator, Texas A&M University - College Station

Laurie Smith, Program Manager, OC STEM Initiative

LaVerne Srinivasan, Vice President National Program, Program Director Education, Carnegie Corporation of New York

Leigh Cleaver, Out Teach

Leigh Peake, Chief Education Officer, Gulf of Maine Research Institute

Lily Zandnia, 6-8 Math Specialist, Chicago Public Schools

Lindsay Wong, 5th Grade Teacher

Lisa Brown, Professional Learning Specialist, Charles A. Dana Center at the University of Texas at Austin

Loretta Kerner

Lori Price

Lynn Bryan, Professor, Purdue University

Madison Wilson

Malia Ramler, Program Officer, Heising-Simons Foundation

Maria McClain, Math Teacher, Deer Valley High School

Marie de Krieger, Teacher in Residence, California Science Center

Marisa Harford, Director of Teacher Residencies, New Visions for Public Schools

Marisa Nathan, Senior Consultant, Confianza

Marty Sixkiller

Mary Anne MCDonough

Melanie Hopkins

Melinda Higgins, Tribal STEM Advisor, CNI/Department of Energy/Office of Nuclear Energy

Melissa Thibault, Vice Chancellor for Distance Education and Extended Programs, North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics

Michelle Kendrick, Program Coordinator, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri

Monica N. Roland, Mathematics Educator

Mr. Atef Otefee

Nancy Hertz Ellis

Natalie Zartarian, Program Manager, Western Governors University

National Writing Project

New Classrooms

Nikki Brooks, Principal, Public Schools of Robeson County

Nilofer Merchant, Author, The Power of Onlyness

Pamela Brice, Education Specialist, SCCMS/S2TEMCenters South Carolina

Patricio Herbst, Professor of Education and Mathematics, University of Michigan

Patrick Moyle

Patti Curtis, STEM Fellow, U.S. Department of Education

Pradeep “Max” Dass, Professor and Director, CSTL, Northern Arizona University

Rachel Millstone, Science Lecturer/Supervisor, University of California, San Diego

Rachel Rowe, Senior Faculty Manager, Western Governors University

Ragnar von Schiber, Associate Director, Genentech

Rex Babiera, Director of Professional Learning, Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago

Rob Leichner, Secondary Math Specialist, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools

Robyn A. Yewell, Teacher, Amphitheater Public Schools, Winifred Harelson Elementary School

Rohan Pavuluri, CEO, Upsolve

Roxanne Sisak, Senior Manager, Program Faculty, Western Governors University

Russell Wong, Board Member, Community Resources for Science

Ryan Wall, Senior Manager for Program Faculty, Advanced Programs, Western Governors University

Sadie Norwick, Senior Manager K-8 Programming, National Math and Science Initiative

Sagit Betser, Bay Area Discovery Museum

Samantha Lindgren

Sandy Morris

Sara Leikin, Director, Strategic Initiatives, National Math and Science Initiative

Sarah Freundlich, 5th Grade Teacher, Lexington Local Schools

Sarah C. Soule, Senior Manager of Teacher Professional Development, California Academy of Sciences

Schools That Can

Scott Heimlich, Vice President, Amgen Foundation

Scott Pulsipher

Sharon Sherman, Professor, Rider University

Sherry Cockerham

Sonya Pryor Jones, Chief Implementation Officer, Fab Foundation

Stacey Ludwig Johnson, Ph.D., VP Operations, Teachers College, Western Governors University

Susan Sheridan, Technology Engineering Teacher, Gardner High School

Susan McPherson, Founder and CEO, McPherson Strategies

Tad Brinkerhoff, Director, eMINTS National Center - University of Missouri

Teresa Barnett, Executive Director, Community Resources for Science

Teresa Kennedy, PhD, Professor International STEM and Bilingual/ELL Education, The University of Texas at Tyler

Thomas T Peters, Executive Director, South Carolina’s Coalition for Mathematics & Science

Tiffany Taber, Senior Adviser to the President & CEO, The Education Trust

Tom O'Connell, Chief Partnerships Officer, Mouse

Tonya M. Matthews, Associate Provost Inclusive Workforce and Dir STEM Innovation Learning Center, Wayne State University

Tracey Campbell, Regional Coordinator, South Carolina’s Coalition for Mathematics & Science

Trena L. Wilkerson, President, National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

Tzipor Ulman, PhD, CEO, Science is Elementary

Umbreen Bhatti

Vang Thao, Teacher on Special Assignment, Fresno Unified School District

Victoria Dunch, Research Coordinator, San Diego Zoo Global

Viva Asmelash, Associate Director, People Operations, Galileo Learning

Wendy Abshire, Education Program Director, American Meteorological Society

Wendy Kopp, CEO & Co-founder, Teach For All

Windsor Pesterfied Ed.D.

Youth Code Jam

Zachary R. Wood

Zee Ann Poerio