President Obama Thanks His 5th Grade Teacher on Teacher Appreciation Day

"She made every single student ... feel special," Obama wrote last year.

ByABC News
May 3, 2016, 3:10 PM

— -- In honor of Teacher Appreciation Day, President Obama tweeted his thanks today to his fifth grade teacher, along with a photo of his fifth grade class.

"To my 5th grade teacher Ms. Mabel Hefty and the educators who inspire our young people every single day: Thank you," Obama wrote.

The tweet comes just hours before the president is set to honor the 2016 National Teacher of the Year and this year's finalists at a White House event.

The president expanded on why his fifth grade teacher, Ms. Hefty, had such a lasting impact on him in an email sent to the White House email list last year.

“The first time she called on me, I wished she hadn't. In fact, I wished I were just about anywhere else but at that desk, in that room of children staring at me. But over the course of that year, Ms. Hefty taught me that I had something to say -- not in spite of my differences, but because of them. She made every single student in that class feel special,” Obama wrote.

"She reinforced that essential value of empathy that my mother and my grandparents had taught me. That is something that I carry with me every day as President. This is the simple and undeniable power of a good teacher," the president continued.