My life changed course twice this year. The first time was when I decided to go back to school…to get a doctorate and fight for all the things that have bothered me since I became a public school school psychologist. It’s not about the letters behind my name. I just want to know more. I need to know. Especially if I am going to be the voice for those that are too tired, too young, or too hurt to speak out.
The second instance was when I sat on waiver committees for high school students. When you look into the eyes of a student who has worked hard all semester, maintained a 95% average! participated in discussion and turned all his work in, then you will know the heartache of sitting on the other side of the table. I was a committee of 4 and he and his dad had waited for 3 hours. It took us 5 minutes. He had spent the weekend worrying about flunking an exam and feeling crushed and worried that he couldn’t pass. A good kid held hostage to the gloom of failure. I could sense it. And that is not only my training, but my nature. I love all kids. I work with all kids. I see the twitch and fumble as they try to read passages that are too hard. I see them face failure every day; craving success. And I see some rise beyond the shadow and others who fall beneath it. I fight for them all. I am not blaming teachers or educators. I blame the CCSS rollout and incessant test prep high stakes rigor mentality. Some times we should be able to stop, teach, learn and love.