Courtesy Photo - Brandon Michaud
Teachers line up for free coffee outside on Nov. 16. The coffee was provided by New England Coffee in a show of appreciation to faculty and staff.
Remote learning has been a difficult process for students, but it also has been a particularly challenging process for teachers. Recently SAU 21 administration partnered with the New England Coffee company to ease this strain on teachers at multiple district schools. They expressed their appreciation with a free coffee day on Nov. 16 at North Hampton School and Dec. 3 for Winnacunnet faculty and staff.
“I felt this was a very kind gesture on the part of New England Coffee considering these challenging times,” Principal’s Secretary Andrea Cabral, who organized the event at Winnacunnet, said. “The intent was to show appreciation for teachers, administration, and staff in a way that would also bring us together, socially distanced, outside.”
According to Cabral, the coffee company took care of setting up the truck outside, and gifted coffee to teachers for about an hour. They received a free gift bag of coffee in addition to a hot cup of coffee, which Cabral described as “perfect” for the cold December day.
“It was very important because those of us working in the WHS building don’t always see each other. Everyone is very segregated in their own ‘areas’ most of the time,” Cabral said. “It was really nice to see everyone who did attend enjoy their coffee, company and conversation, socially-distanced, of course.”
Social Studies teacher Andrew Gushee was one of the many attendees of the event. He said he enjoyed it, and felt that the event fulfilled its purpose of giving teachers appreciation and a “brief respite” from the daily hardships of remote learning.
“The nature of synchronous remote teaching is extremely isolating. Teachers spend their entire day on a screen and may only see a handful of their colleagues each day,” Gushee said. “The pandemic has cost us those opportunities to connect, those activities that bring us together as a staff and that foster community and collegiality.”
Cabral said she would “love” to bring this event to Winnacunnet again if given the opportunity.
“I received a lot of positive feedback from WHS staff and teachers, they were truly appreciative,” Cabral said. “It may have been just a cup of coffee, but this gesture meant a lot to them.”