GraDAtude for An Unprecedented Effort in an Unprecedented Year

Durham Academy Parents Association organized two huge waves of gratitude from parents and students this year — including one in the form of a mid-year Padlet (digital message board) with posts of appreciation and encouragement, and a collection of more than 60 student video testimonials shared with faculty and staff during Teacher Appreciation Week in May. Here are some highlights.

“You are teaching our kids to be tough, to be committed, to support one another, to always ‘show up’ and to stay positive. You’re teaching them to be moral, happy and productive citizens.”
— Fiona and Chris Lundblad, parents

“Thank you to all the teachers who have remained committed to their students, despite this challenging school year. Your efforts do not go unnoticed.”
— Lee Jeffries ’21

“I’m thankful for my teachers because I learned about castles and volcanoes and animals.”
— Caroline Alonso ’34

“We see the twinkle in your eyes above those masks during drop-off and pickup and the joy you take in having your students back. We see immeasurable happiness in our children after days on campus.”
— Kelly and Bill Wood, parents

“I know how much work it takes, because both my parents are in it, so I’d like to thank them and the rest of the faculty and staff for a great year and a great job during this weird time.”
— Toby Harris ’21

“You jeopardized your health and showed up for us. You had to learn new ways to teach so that unlike many other kids, we got to have an amazing education.”
— Michael Milano ’24 and Thomas Milano ’24

“A big thank you from your remote students. This year wasn’t easy on any of us, but especially on you guys because you have to adapt and think of new ways to teach us students.”
— Kai Forbach ’26

“Thank you for being the best teachers ever and for all I learned over this year and for keeping us safe.”
— Emmy Tom ’33

“In spite of the masks, social distances and protocols, something shines bright! That brightness is from your grace, your humor and your kindness.”
— Rajeev Dharmapurikar and Sangeeta Joshi, parents

“We are so fortunate to have teachers as hardworking as you, and we are truly grateful for everything that you have done for us over the past few years and especially this past year.”
— Charith Fernando ’23 and Tharindu Fernando ’21

“For myself, from the rest of the senior class, just know your work and effort doesn’t go unnoticed at all and you’ve made some lasting memories that I’ll be able to hold on to forever.”
— Alex Pfeil ’21

Watch a collection of videos: and

Check out additional gratitude messages on DA Parents Association Instagram: @da_parents.