As thousands of school-aged children across Australia continue to learn from home, many kids and their teachers in the US returned to the classroom this week, after the summer break.
As lessons get underway, one US primary school teacher, Rachel Harder, has made headlines for establishing a simple way for parents to communicate if their child needs extra support.
After working with the parents of an autistic student who was new to her class and beginning to struggle, she came up with the 'handle with care' text message system.
Watch: A thank you to all teachers, everywhere. Post continues below.
In an interview with Fox News, Harder describes how some days this student would be having a tough day. So, she asked the student's mum to send her a quick text message with just three words, 'handle with care', on those especially difficult mornings.
"I knew that when she would text me, that her daughter needed some extra time and a quiet location, not the gym for morning announcements, so that the rest of her day went smoothly," Harder said.
Harder went on to say how this experience with one family eventually translated into an approach for every child in her care.
She sent out a note to parents to explain her 'handle with care' text system.
The note read, 'If your family is experiencing difficulty at home, I would like to provide additional support at school. I understand that you are not always able to share details and that’s okay. If your child is coming to school after a difficult night, morning or weekend, please text me, "Handle with Care". Nothing else will be said or asked. This will let me know that your child may need extra time, patience or help during the day.'
Giving students some extra patience and support on the days they need it most has had a huge impact on Harder’s students and their families.