Students surprise teachers with a parade

It’s hard to tell who misses regular school days more, the students or the teachers?  “Kids are missing their teachers and their teachers are missing their students,” said Summer Bendickson, whose son Zade is a second grader and Zellah is a kindergartener.  Bendickson organized a drive-by parade last week, complete with a police car escort and students waving with signs from car windows and sun roofs, for Clear Lake teachers Kelly Cooney (pictured) and Kim Quintus.  “It was just a small way for the families of the students to show these teachers our appreciation,” she explained.  “They are such thoughtful, caring, passionate teachers.  They took teaching their kids in the classroom and moved it to online learning with enthusiasm and are investing so much time.”  Cooney said she was surprised by the parade and noted Bendickson contacted her daughter to help with scheduling.  “My husband lured me to the driveway.  “It was overwhelming to see my kids in person,” said Cooney, adding that she teaches them in small groups three times a week via computer.  Quintus, who lives in Ventura, was treated to a parade led by her husband, John, who serves as the fire chief.  Cooney and Quintus say they miss having closure with their classes.  “We spend the year talking about what needs to be learned by the end of the school year and every one makes goals for their learning. I miss the celebration of them reaching their goals—  the excitement and confidence they express as the year comes to an end,” said Cooney.  I fall in love with my kids and it is hard to let them go. - Reporter photo by Chris Barragy.

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