Southfield teacher uses crowdfunding to help create safe space for her students

Third grade teacher Ronya Croitori says she reached her goal thanks to a generous WDET listener.

Ronya Croitori's third grade class at McIntyre Elementary School in Southfield, Mich.

An elementary school teacher in Metro Detroit has turned to the public to help her students have a safe spot away from classroom activity.

Ronya Croitori is a third grade teacher at McIntyre Elementary in Southfield. She joined CultureShift to discuss the crowdfunding campaign to purchase a small table and chairs for her nearly two dozen students.

Crotori says the table is necessary for students to be able to take a rest from any overwhelming activities they may be involved in during the school day.

“It’s very difficult to teach the whole class at once (after the pandemic). I have to teach in small groups — (they) need ‘brain breaks’ and more attention on social and emotional well-being for the kids,” Crotori said.

“The kids are overwhelmed, they cry easily. It’s heart-breaking.”

Croitori empathizes with her students’ struggles. Due to the pandemic, this is the first school year that her students are attending in-person classes full time.

Listen to the entire interview using the player above.

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  • Amanda LeClaire
    Amanda LeClaire is an award-winning host and producer of CultureShift on 101.9 WDET-FM Detroit’s NPR station. She’s a founding producer of WDET’s flagship news talk show Detroit Today, and a former host/reporter for Arizona Public Media. Amanda is also an artist, certified intuitive and energy healer, and professional tarot reader.