Minnesota teacher with cancer continues virtual classes, even during chemotherapy

"What better way to spend four or five hours than with 5-year-olds"

Chip Reid – CBS News

Kelly Klein is that teacher everyone remembers — even during a year she’d rather forget. Klein isn’t only tackling virtual learning. She’s doing it while battling a recurrence of ovarian cancer.

She’s in her online classroom every day, even during chemotherapy. She declined to go on leave during her treatment.

“I was first diagnosed five years ago, and I did take leave then because I was really sick,” Klein said. “I missed teaching so much.”

The kindergartners watch Klein as she goes through treatment. “What better way to spend four or five hours than with 5-year-olds. It makes the time pass quickly. It makes me smile,” she said.

The Minnesota mother of two says she wants to show all her students that even with cancer, people can thrive.

“It’s real easy to go down the ‘Why me?’ — and I think if I didn’t have five year olds to teach every day, I would spend a lot of time thinking about that,” Klein said, adding that her students “absolutely give me strength.”

And she’s giving them a lesson in living life to the fullest.

banner image – handout via Edwin Visalden