The importance of having mentors pt. 1
I hope this doesn’t come off as being pompous, but one of the things I want to do with my life is record it, and find a way to thank all the people who have contributed. What better way than to write while you’re at work?!
I’ve been blessed. Even though I was born in Detroit, I NEVER saw any of the issues that plague DPS right now (Massive debt and low graduation rates being at the top), because my mother didn’t want me in just any school. Malcolm X Academy- I never will understand how my mother got me allll the way there on a daily (This is when it was behind Northwestern high) , but i remember having those journeys books (they came in green and red, i think) at Kindergarten level. they were the same books that the 3rd graders at my school were reading. Don’t remember the specifics, but my teacher pulled me out of class to meet with the principal about my reading skills. Kindergarten, and I’m already being told by the staff that there’s a school that is better suited to cultivate my mind… Blessing in itself right there to even IDENTIFY that there may be a better place to have your child.
1st grade. Still in Detroit, and if you’re from Detroit you know where i ended up, the only place that the “who’s who” of smart kids go, Bates Academy. You can google that school today, and they still rant and rave about the quality of education and the people they’ve produced. Also had one of the BEST teachers EVER. In first grade. Terri Ossman, bless her soul (The packed funeral of a teacher who impacted more people than you can count says it all.) would give me extra work to counteract me being all over the place. The most reassuring, yet challenging educator i have EVER worked with. Speaks volumes that I don’t remember who the principal was, yet I remember her.
2nd grade I moved out to suburbia. West Bloomfield, affluent and white. 3 black kids in my class, but the educational resources trumped anything i saw in Detroit. 2nd grade teacher, eh remember her name, but don’t remember any impact. Based off the memories I have prior to this, It’s safe to say it was a minimal contribution.
3rd grade. more eh. The only thing i remember about 3rd grade is that I found out at the end of the year, i would be placed in a magnet program at yet another school. (10 schools from k-10.) I’m starting to see a correlation. Being in suburbia I dont remember ANY teacher really making a impact, so let’s just skip to 7th grade.While West Bloomfield gave me the tangible tools to be successful (all the programs, computers, cameras i could ever want access to) i’ve noticed that i didn’t have any interaction with any teacher,admin, anyone that made a personal influence on where i am today. It was going through the motions in my “formative” years, (This is not putting the onus on them, because i had GREAT parental involvement, even with them being separated) without my family,i feel like i would have been doomed if i had been stuck with them. I know that if you can’t motivate yourself, it’s a damn shame to look for (expect) someone else to light that fire, but it’s nice to have someone to look up to, give you some type of inspiration, i guess. This isn’t a critique on my experience of being a black kid in a white neighborhood (as i don’t believe my issues were racial… you’ll find out later), but the complacency of a well to do school district (with 6 figure households, both parents all that Grant Hill type shit) who believed that having the tools without the passion would generate results. Granted, it works often, but in this case methinksnot. None of the teachers I had in W.B. would have put up any kind of production in DPS. Teachers have to care. The teachers out there were blessed with being intelligent, but lacked the compassion, the joy that an educator should have. I guess this is too much ranting for Tumblr, and I’m sorry if i ruined your feed. lol. Someone send me a gif talkin bout how you won’t read this. Thanks.
I feel like i was supposed to be writing here. There’s a correlation between how dumb I’ve been feeling and the lack of intellectual stimulation i’ve been having.
Chalk Board theme