There is no doubt this has been a tough school year, but Ohio educators are making sure students keep learning.
This week's "Classroom Hero" is J.J. LaBatte from Crooksville High School. LaBatte not only teaches English, but he also helps students earn college credit as an adjunct professor, coaches track, and advises National Honor Society.
LaBatte was nominated by senior Alli Theisen, who has been in his class since her sophomore year.
"He's just that teacher," Theisen said. "Everybody knows him. He is always willing to help anybody, always staying on top of those students even if he doesn't have them in class ... just reaching out and always being there for his students."
LaBatte said his goal is to create a classroom culture that inspires lifelong learning.
"I think with every educator at the heart of them is they had a great teacher growing up," LaBatte said. "Even though I doubt Alli Theisen wants to become an English Teacher, if she becomes a lifelong learner and she's proud of what she does, then I feel like I'm passing down the same lessons that I learned from my Classroom Heroes."
Theisen said LaBatte has helped her get ready for life after graduation.
"He's really stepped up and written me letters of recommendation, proofread scholarships, all of the things we needed him to do," she said. "When we went remote ... I exchanged many, many emails at different hours of the day and he always answered and helped me with whatever I needed."
LaBatte said he believes in the power of "kindness and paying it forward."
"It's going beyond the classroom. It's making an impact and what I'm doing daily matters," he said.
Each week we will spotlight a "Classroom Hero" on 10TV News. You can nominate teachers, coaches, or any staff member who is making an impact.
Click here to nominate your "Classroom Hero" today.