Amidst a global pandemic, teachers have been called to adopt new teaching methods while spending countless hours working remotely from home to prepare their students for the new world of learning.
And in San Fernando, the Standard Five pupils of St Gabriels Girls’ RC School were so moved by their teacher’s devotion that they paid a special tribute to her on World Teacher’s Day.
Standard Five teacher Dixie-Ann Creese-Lee expressed surprise when she saw the motorcade of 26 cars coming through her neighbourhood.
While her neighbours gawked, Creese-Lee stood outside moved to tears as the children came one by one with balloons, flowers, gifts, cards and other tokens.
They could not hug or kiss but they danced, bowed and blew kisses for Creese-Lee while she laughingly returned the affection from afar.
Speaking to Guardian Media, Creese-Lee said it was one of the most touching moments of her life.
“I did not expect this. They told me they were coming to bring some food. I am blown away by all of this. They had me crying. I am very touched that they will do something like this for me,” Creese-Lee said.
She said she taught the class from Standard Two, right up to Standard Five.
“This is the first Standard Five class that I ever taught. I am amazed by this group,” she said.
She noted that their parents were always supportive so when COVID-19 hit she continued working with her class to get them adequately prepared for the SEA exam.
“Once you understand how to use the technology and the parents of the students are cooperative you should be okay. I worked with my students, sent essays through email and we worked that method. This is my first Standard 4 and 5 class and I already know in my heart they are going to exceed my expectations,” Creese-Lee said.
Several parents showered Creese-Lee with praises saying she always went beyond the call of duty for her children.
Jillian Caesar said the idea to celebrate Creese-Lee came from the students.
She said every parent made a donation and they decided to organise a fine dining experience for Creese-Lee and her family right at home. They also did a scrapbook showing photos of all the children as they progressed with their teacher from Standard Two to Standard Five.
Caesar said the children made placards, banners and bouquets to show their love for their teacher.
Head girl Antonia Graham said Creese-Lee was always accessible and helpful to them.
“She has always been supportive of us. She was always with us and she made learning fun. She really is an amazing teacher,” Graham said.
She noted that during the COVID-19 lockdown, Creese-Lee continued to give them advice and support.
Another pupil Mercedez David said the tokens they gave to Creese-Lee was necessary to show her how much she was loved.
“We just want to thank her for all she did for us. We will no longer be in her class but she will always be in our hearts,” she added.