Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Above What is Expected...

Sometimes things happen at our school and I am just blown away by teachers who go so far above and beyond.  Something like that happened recently.  I had a cute little pudgy, in that baby sort of way, towheaded munchkin in Kindergarten and first grade.  He struggled in a quiet sort of way and was identified for Special Education services.  In the process I met his Dad.  It was obvious that this Dad cared about his son dearly.  He reminded me of what I would call "a good ol' country boy," a little rough around the edges but he always showed up to let us know that he cared.  He tried to do the right thing, worked hard and did the best he could for his son.  I'm not sure where Darrin's (name changed) mother was but she was out of the picture entirely.  This was a Dad raising his son alone.

As the years went by I would see Darrin walking to his bus or would hear how he was doing from one of his other teachers.  He was a struggling student, barely making it through the maze of education.  Every now and then he would be in some sort of trouble but nothing serious - sort of "all boy" stuff.  Sometimes, in recent years, it would be a little more serious.   Darrin has moved on to middle school and I had heard he was beginning to get into some trouble.  Then, about a year ago, I heard that his father had cancer.  During the last year, our school reached out to the Darrin and his Dad - meals were taken, work was done on their tailer, a local church was asked to get involved.  This past week his father died... and his son is now an orphan.  The school, along with the church, stood beside this 13 year old boy, during a time of great crisis.  At the father's memorial our Principal delivered the eulogy at the request of the son.  The pew at the funeral was filled with almost every teacher the child had ever had at Chets Creek and some that just came for support.  The Media Specialist made a slide show of pictures that the son got together.  The church, along with our faculty, provided food and desserts for the small family and guests.  Money was collected to go into an account to be used for the son's needs.

I don't know what will happen for this young man.  Several of our teachers are involved with a family that is thinking about taking this young boy in.  Even though he had wonderful teachers at our school, we were not able to remediate all of his academic challenges but we did establish a relationship that reached well beyond the classroom.  As I looked around at the Memorial, I was just so proud of the people that I work with.  I feel so blessed to work with people who REALLY care about children and their families and who are willing to go the extra mile for each one of them...  You can't put that in an evaluation or even a pay check, but when you work in a school that walks the talk, it is life changing...  You can't expect any more from your life's work than that.

1 comment:

Mrs. Patricia Wallace said...

It was a beautiful sight to see all his school "mothers" there in the chapel wanting to continue to show their support for this young man. Just like our Principal said, with love, encouragement, and discipline, we will help him continue his journey.