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Northeast High School teachers get surprise dove release for Teacher Appreciation Week

As part of this week's Teacher Appreciation Week celebrations, the teachers enjoyed food, music and the release of three doves.

MACON, Ga. — Teachers at Northeast High School received a surprise visit from three feathery friends on Thursday. As part of Teacher Appreciation Week, three doves were released at a staff celebration after school.

"The dove release was just the most symbolic symbols we use here to show our teachers here at Northeast High School how much we appreciate every effort, every day they walk through these doors," Barbara Neeley, president of the Lake Arrowhead Watch, said.

The event was set up by Northeast High School's family facilitator, Chris West, and the Lake Arrowhead and Walnut Creek Neighborhood watches.

There was food, music and speakers. Teachers received a letter with another teacher's name on it. They would then find the teacher and say "I see you."

"But the dove release was a way to show appreciation for their efforts teaching our neighborhood kids," Neeley said. "Its building a foundation under them saying, 'Here we see you, we thank you for every day listening to our children, teaching our children, and it makes it a difference. It does matter, and we do care."

Agriculture teacher Gabrielle Lindo is a first year teacher at Northeast High School, and this is her first Teacher Appreciation Week.

"We would not be here without our teachers. I'm a product of another teacher," Lindo said. "At the end of the day, they teach us lesson, they guide us, they protect us, they help us to be who we are, and who we need to be to move on and be better for our future."

Jamie Granville impressed upon the crowd the true impact of teachers on the lives of others in a speech at the event. He told the teachers about how his principal at Bibb County Schools encouraged him to graduate with his GED even after he decided to leave school and join the army.

It was a gesture that taught him to appreciate education, he said, and it would allow him to eventually attend Fort Valley State University after he returned from his time in the army.

As a first year teacher, Lindo thinks Teacher Appreciation Week is a good chance to remind teachers of the impact they can have, even if it can be difficult to see it in the day-to-day grind.

"A lot of time you give, give, give, and sometimes you may not feel like you're receiving it immediately," Lindo said. "But it is fine because at the end of the day it comes back in slow measures."

While her first year has had its "ups and downs," she said that her first year teaching has been good. 

"As we Raiders always say, we persevere through our challenges, and that's what I do," Lindo said. "Especially with my students, everyday I tell them, even if it may be a day they're going through something rough, we'll persevere through the challenges. We'll get it done." 

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