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Student bummed after teacher parade: ‘I miss school’

‘He has done video calls with friends but it just isn’t the same,' mom says

Between school closures and spring break, Liam McMaster hasn’t gone to school in nearly two weeks. So, he couldn’t wait to see some familiar faces this week.

Liam, a first-grader at Lakeside Elementary School, was waiting outside Wednesday when a group of teachers rode past in their cars, honking their horns, in a parade that ran along students’ bus routes.

His mother, Cristy Batchelor, shared a video clip of him waving to each passing teacher in the caravan. Her son even drew some chalk art in the street ahead of time to greet them.

“He is missing school a lot,” Batchelor told News4Jax. “I don’t think he realized until today, however, seeing all of his teachers, how much he really missed it.”

Liam McMaster draws some chalk artwork for his teachers before they arrive.
Liam McMaster draws some chalk artwork for his teachers before they arrive. (Courtesy of Cristy Batchelor)

In that sense, Liam isn’t alone. Students throughout the state are adjusting to the new normal.

With schools pivoting to online learning in response to the coronavirus outbreak, Florida’s teachers are finding creative ways to connect with their students and restore some small measure of normalcy.

That was the case Tuesday as teachers in Clay and Nassau counties hit the road. Their vehicles displayed affectionate words, such as “I love you,” to show students that at least that part of school isn’t changing.

“When they were all gone, (Liam) slouched down on the truck and said, ‘Man, I miss school,’” Batchelor said. “He has done video calls with friends but it just isn’t the same.”


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