We’ve chosen the winner and runners-up to this year’s
TeachKind Teacher Appreciation contest! We were overwhelmed by the number of
inspiring entrants we received, but as you’ll see, these four educators truly
stand out for their dedication and great work teaching students about animal
rights. They’ve shown compassion in and out of the classroom and have inspired
their students and communities to extend their kindness to animals.

Meet these compassionate TeachKind teachers:


Fifth-grade teacher Mary Ryan truly goes above and beyond
when it comes to humane education. As the leader of her school’s KIND Club,
Mary helps her students take action on important animal rights issues by
writing letters, making posters, volunteering at local adoption centers, and
hosting fundraisers to raise money and collect items for animals in need. Every
Monday, Mary hosts a Meatless Monday lunch in her classroom, where students get
together to sample new vegan foods, learn about factory farming, and swap
recipes. They’re even working to make more vegan options available in the

This year, Mary hosted a vegan food sampling at her school’s
Spring Fair, giving many students a chance to sample delicious Tofurky sausages
and veggies! She also gave a presentation on humane education and its benefits
to her school’s parent-teacher association and continues to write a monthly
column in their newsletter about the KIND Club and animal rights activism.

As if that weren’t fantastic enough, Mary has used her own
money to help financially struggling students when they’ve needed to have their
animals spayed or neutered. This year alone, Mary helped to ensure that six of
her students’ cats got fixed.

Mary is a true superstar for students and animals, and we’re
thrilled to honor her as the Teacher Appreciation contest winner!


Dedicated educator Cat is never afraid to speak up for
animals! As president of her school’s animal rights group, A Cause for Paws, the seventh-
and eighth-grade teacher educates her students on various animal rights issues
and has even helped a number of students to go vegan. Thanks to her work, her
cafeteria has adopted Meatless Mondays, and she is currently lobbying to expand
this into a districtwide initiative. When her school’s biology department
planned an animal dissection, Cat spoke out against it and presented the issue
to the superintendent. She even brought her principal to see PETA President
Ingrid E. Newkirk speak in Los Angeles, after which Ingrid visited Fedde Middle
School to give a speech on animal rights! Way to go, Cat!

Animal lover and longtime vegetarian Alicia is grateful to
have a job where she can be a positive influence on the young learners in her fourth-grade
class by teaching them to be compassionate to animals. Every year, she uses
PETA literature in her classroom and teaches her students about all aspects of
animal rights by creating her own animal rights–related lessons and projects.
Her students love learning new ways to help animals, and Alicia is open with
them about the reasons why she chooses to leave animals out of her diet, often
sharing snacks from her own meatless lunch to let students know that
plant-based food is kind and
delicious! Great job, Alicia!

Math teacher Jill isn’t just teaching equations—she’s
also teaching compassion! As founder of her school’s Veg*n (vegan and
vegetarian) club, she gives her students literature on animal rights issues,
shows them documentaries, and shares vegan recipes for them to try. She and the
club members have visited an animal rescue sanctuary twice now, and
they’re currently working to make more vegan options available in their
cafeteria! When her school hosted their Lunch on the Lawn event this year, she
made sure several vegetarian restaurants were involved to ensure that all
students had healthy and humane options to choose from. Jill has inspired many
students to adopt more compassionate lifestyles and even cut meat out of their
diets entirely. Keep it up, Jill!


Congratulations to our winner and runners-up! Keep up the great
work for animals!

Want to be in the
running to win next year’s Teacher Appreciation contest?
Get a head start!
Touch base with Nina at [email protected] to
find out how you, too, can be a TeachKind teacher and start making a difference
for animals in your school today.

  • Join the Action Team
  • Sign Up for PETA Mobile Alerts
  • Help Animals Online
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Article source: PETA Action Alerts

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