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Teacher's Journal: Fear, Anxiety, Determination to Start School Year

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Many Connecticut teachers are nervous about the return to the classroom amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Some of them also feel that expressing their concerns publicly could reflect negatively in the eyes of their employers.

From Waterbury to Glastonbury to East Lyme and other communities big and small across the state, educators are sharing their personal thoughts in NBC Connecticut’s Teacher’s Journal.

These teachers did not want to reveal their identities or even the sound of their voices. They did, however, want to share what they have been feeling - in their own words.

The educators who contributed to our Teacher's Journal said they are devoted to their profession. Despite the risks some of them feel they are taking, they said they are guided by a mission to give students the best education possible during these difficult times.

Below are several of the Teacher’s Journal entries written by educators from across Connecticut. Each excerpt is followed by the teacher's full journal entry.

NBC Connecticut

I have had nightmares about socially-distanced classrooms with ill students that I cannot help nor escape from. My fears have led me, an educator in their late 20s, to research into and begin crafting my will.

Will I be fully protected? Absolutely not. But just like essential workers, I have a job to do to the best of my ability and that is what I plan to do, no matter the situation.

Looking to the future, I am happy that my school has taken the necessary precautions and strives to exceed requirements to ensure our safety. I am comfortable going back but truly don’t know what to expect until I walk through those doors.

Instead of buying cool new books and hands on resources for my students, I am buying surgical masks, face shields, scrub skirts, hand sanitizer, and cleaning wipes when I can find them, with my own funds. Although my district has some resources, veteran teachers know that they will not be enough.

I'm already losing sleep worrying about this. Please don't put a group of selfless, caring, and dedicated professionals into the guilt-ridden position of putting students, students' families, themselves, and their own families in a life or death situation in the midst of a pandemic with no vaccine, no cure, and national surges.

It was not easy for these teachers to share these stories. But they felt they could do it in this manner - and we thank them.

If you are an educator going back into the classroom, you can contribute to our Teacher’s Journal by emailing

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