BEAVERCREEK TOWNSHIP — Hindu Community Organization of Dayton (HCO) members honored Jacob Coy Middle School teachers March 1 with handmade gift baskets.
Sunita Agarwal, who organized the teacher appreciation ceremony, said she hopes this is the start of a community tradition.
“We decided to do this because it is a very old Indian tradition to respect, show gratitude to teachers,” Agarwal said. “I am standing here today because of my teachers, because they taught me values of life. Besides English, math, social studies, they teach us problem solving, which is beyond textbooks. We so owe much to our teachers. With that philosophy, we are here.”
State Rep. Niraj Antani also addressed the room full of teachers and students.
“In Hindu culture, education is very, very important. The entire Hindu community in Dayton appreciates you,” he said.
Volunteers passed out the handcrafted bowls, filled with goodies and student-made cards, to each teacher in the room.
“This was so touching and so positive. I had teachers in tears,” Principal Andrea Ferguson said. “I think all of them left today feeling like rock stars. I wish we could do something like this every day. This was amazing. Just so much love and positivity. My cup runneth over.”
Agarwal said she started with Coy Middle School but she wants to reach out to other schools in the community and appreciate their teachers, too.
“In the word “guru,” “gu” means darkness and “ru” means removal,” Agarwal said. “So we are honoring the removal of darkness.”