Henry County teachers will honor colleague lost to COVID-19

On Monday, teachers at Stockbridge Elementary School in Henry County will remember their colleague LuAnn Klein Burns, who died last week of COVID-19. (Twitter photo/Henry County Schools)
On Monday, teachers at Stockbridge Elementary School in Henry County will remember their colleague LuAnn Klein Burns, who died last week of COVID-19. (Twitter photo/Henry County Schools)

Memorial will be held Monday at Stockbridge Elementary School to celebrate life of veteran educator

On Monday, teachers at Stockbridge Elementary School in Henry County will remember their colleague LuAnn Klein Burns, who died last week of COVID-19.

Parents and community members are invited to the 7:30 a.m. memorial for the kindergarten teacher at the elementary school.

Ms. Burns worked at Stockbridge Elementary since 2000. According to her faculty page, she and her husband Russ were married for 34 years and have two children, both of whom are music teachers. Her Facebook page bears the legend: “Teachers change lives.”

LuAnn Klein Burns
LuAnn Klein Burns

On her page, Ms. Burns wrote, “I spend my free time visiting my 85-year-old father who lives in Indiana. I can’t wait to meet you and share my love of learning.” Her funeral mass was held in Indiana this weekend.

A district spokesman declined to give a statement about Ms. Burns, saying, “We did have a teacher pass away but I can’t comment on or confirm the cause of death. Our condolences go out to this teacher’s family. Counselors will be available virtually for any students or staff needing to speak with someone.”

After the memorial Monday, six to eight teachers plan to meet with the principal of the school to discuss their safety concerns, said Jennifer Saunders, president of the Georgia Federation of Public Service Employees and an Atlanta teacher.

Saunders said teachers want reassurances the school will adhere to the COVID-19 playbook created by the district to ensure safety. “They want to keep their jobs,” said Saunders in a telephone interview Sunday night. “But they are naturally concerned for their own lives and their own safety and that of their students. They love teaching, but they love living more.”

There have been several teacher deaths in Georgia over the last two weeks including Cobb art teacher Patrick Key, Hart County science teacher Kelley Cordell Gaines and Irwin County first grade teacher Tammie Sanford.

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