Garland ISD

Teacher Instructs From Hospital Bed to Keep Students From Falling Behind

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Almost everyone has a teacher who just made it click.

"Reading has been a struggle, and she makes reading make much more sense," said Memphis Mobley, a student at Garland ISD's Sewell Elementary in Sachse.

From her animated character impressions to her Backstreet Boys poster behind her desk, it's hard to stop watching Stephany Hume teach reading and fight learning loss during a pandemic.

"These kids are feeling the same feelings we're feeling," she said. "They're afraid, they're unsure of what's coming next."

No one saw what was coming for Hume though.

"I am a two-time cancer survivor," she said. "I had put off going to the doctor because I didn't want to miss anything. It turns out I had to have surgery."

Following the surprise surgery, what happened next, knowing Hume, wasn't a total surprise. Hours after her surgery, she was teaching again, from her hospital bed.

"I was asking the doctor, 'Can I go now? Can I go now?' And he's like, 'You have a temperature of 102. You have to stay.'"

Stay she did, stay and teach, even though her kids couldn't have been in better hands.

"They had a really good sub, my mom is a retired teacher, so she was my substitute," Hume said.

She personally arranged to have her mother take over, follow strict guidelines and instruction, and yes, let her pop in and teach fresh out of surgery.

"I was thinking she needed to rest but being a teacher myself I understood," said Susie Harris, Hume's mother and a retired teacher with 41 years of experience.

Her students were a bit concerned too but shrugged it off as soon as they saw her pop up in the classroom thanks to video conferencing.

"The chat box went from nothing to max capacity real fast," said student Austin Moody, who calls Hume his favorite teacher. "That meant a lot to have a teacher that cared enough to read us a book like that."

Following her procedure, Hume was discharged and has since returned to the classroom.

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