Teachers are under immense pressure right now and they’re leaving their jobs.
Maybe it’s because teachers are grossly underpaid, overworked, and have suffered extra stress with teaching during the COVD-19 pandemic. They’re also under-supported and undersupplied. Oh, and now they are understaffed.
A survey from the National Education Association showed that 74% of teachers have had to fill in for colleagues or take on extra duties due to staff shortage. And, 30% of teachers don’t see themselves staying in education 5 years from now.
Quite simply, teachers are burned out.
Sharon McMahon, a former high school teacher and a viral Instagram star, started a crowdfunding campaign to support teachers across America. Last year she did something similar and raised just over $500,000 dollars. This year, she collected $1.2 million dollars…within 48 hours.
Who is Sharon McMahon?
Sharon McMahon became famous during the infamous 2020 American presidential election when she began educating the public on politics.
As a former teacher, she’s also passionate about empowering other teachers. She has over 900,000 followers on Instagram and a podcast (Sharon Says So) with over 11 million downloads. Known as “America’s government teacher,” she shares the facts about what’s going on in the U.S. government and politics. (Which isn’t as easy as it sounds because there are so many conspiracy theories online these days.)
The money Sharon and the “governerds” (what her followers call themselves) raised is going to over 2000 teachers across the country in the form of $500 grants. Each $500 grant will help teachers buy supplies for their classrooms. This could be books, decorations, supplies, snacks, etc.
Why people donated to Sharon’s campaign
The amount of money Sharon and her followers raised is amazing, but the reasons why people decided to donate is even more inspiring. Countless people shared stories of why they were donating; teachers, parents, mentors, etc.
One donor said they were giving for, “the teachers that stay late, unlock the secret potential in kids, hold them accountable to possibility, mother and father children who need that kind of love, and for all the educators in my mom’s hometown of Ulvade.”
Another person who donated added this to their Venmo donation:
“In honor of my FIL [father-in-law] who just passed away after an unsuccessful bone marrow transplant. He was a HS chemistry teacher for 30+ years and students came to his funeral who had him 20+ years ago and still had stories to share on how he impacted them.”
And, not everyone donated in memory of a teacher or for an experience they had in the past–this was also about the future. As one donor put it:
“I have an 18 month-old who has a lifetime of learning ahead of her. I want her to grow up in a world where teachers are supported and recognized for the incredible, selfless work they do.”
We see you, teachers.
We see you, teachers, and we know how hard you are working and how much you care for your students. We appreciate you. If you know a teacher, thank them and ask them how you can help. Nothing is too small—many of Sharon’s donors gave as little as $1-5, but together, they reached over $1 million dollars in 48 hours. Together, over the last 2 years they’ve donated $6.2 million dollars.