By this point, the world knows about the recent hit that the city beautiful has taken. It has been a challenging few days to hold back the emotion and the tears, as we hurt together. Why? That is the question in the minds of many at this time because things like this seem to always happen to innocent, good people. As I began to really think about this whole thing, and read about it on news headlines and media web sites, I wondered what is at the heart of an incident like this. The conclusion I was able to draw is simply that life is fragile and that there is truly no way to knowing when events like this would occur and moreover, to prepare for them. With the life we have, every day must be lived on purpose, and we simply must be there for others, love on purpose, live on purpose and be intentional. Don’t wait to demonstrate compassion. As an educator, I know that events such as these would weigh heavily on the minds of students and naturally they will ask questions about these horrific events, perhaps out of curiousity or even fear. It is our duty to embrace, advocate for and protect those we have been charged with. I cannot help but be moved to teach harder, to try even harder to make a difference in the lives I am honored to influence. I think this is a reminder to all who deal with kids that we must be vigilant as well as good listeners. Let them express themselves, interact with them and show them what it means to know love and compassion, as well as acceptance and diversity. It is our duty as educators to not only focus on curriculum but bridge gaps. In fact, we must focus on the character of the students we teach, not just the curriculum. Orlando is still the city beautiful.