World Teachers’ Day - A message from the Premier

25 October 2013

World Teachers' Day is an opportunity to show our appreciation to the thousands of great teachers in New South Wales schools who daily inspire a love of learning in their students.

On this World Teachers' Day there is a deep sense of sadness for the principals, teachers, school support staff, students and families who have lost their homes and belongings in the devastating bushfires.

The impact of this disaster is enormous and the groundswell of support and help for those affected is commendable. This is a state that pulls together as a caring community to help those in need.

There have been many uplifting and inspiring stories of teachers and principals who showed leadership at the height of the crisis.

There were principals and teachers who put the care of their students first, even when they knew their own homes had been lost. They led their students to safety and stayed with them for hours until their parents arrived.

I want to thank the teachers, principals and school support staff serving as volunteers in the Rural Fire Service. Many have worked long hours battling fires while their own properties were under threat.

Schools and TAFE institutes have been severely disrupted or forced to close. Students have been evacuated during their Higher School Certificate exams.

This emergency reminds us that the role of teachers extends well beyond the classroom. Teachers are important and respected members of our society and most choose this career because they want to make a real difference to the lives of young people.

When this emergency is over we know our teachers will be back in the classroom supporting their students and helping them realise their dreams.

Barry O'Farrell

Premier of NSW

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