Last week, we made a big deal over four superb teachers. We rounded up reporters, mayors, school leaders, family members and many more to surprise them in their classrooms. I had the great honor of presenting the Fishman Prize for Superlative Classroom Practice to one of those great teachers, Stephanie Sun.
I credit my education to Ms. Mabel Hefty just as much as I would any institution of higher learning. When I entered Ms. Hefty's fifth-grade class at Punahou School in the fall of 1971, I was just a kid with a funny name in a new school, feeling a little out of place, hoping to fit in like anyone else.
Even on the difficult days, remember that you are never forgotten. Students who read this letter will think of you. They think of you all the time. We all will talk about the stories of teachers that we adored for decades. We will laugh, cry and appreciate. We carry what you taught us in our minds, and also in our hearts, for the rest of our lives.