Advocating for Students: Teachers Making a Difference

July 13, 2012

I received this email from one of my university students (a middle school teacher) last month.  It really touched my heart.  This is a wonderful example of those special teachers – the ones who put forth the effort and embrace the challenge of doing what it takes to help a struggling student.   I love Bev’s message and appreciate her allowing me to share what she wrote below:

“Hi Sandra, I just wanted to give you an update on the student we had discussed. First, thank you for your encouragement to be an advocate for this young lady. I was able to place her in a peer tutor position in my class, helped her organize her binder and assignments, and became a part of her intervention team. She was able to get caught up on all her assignments (there were many passed due), and she brought her grades up to D’s – B’s after being straight F’s the previous trimester. Most of all, she has now been evaluated, and found she qualifies for SPED (Special Education) services. After watching her put all her effort into just getting all of her assignments in on time, it was hard on her (and broke my heart) when she was still getting very low grades, especially in math, because of low test scores.

Unfortunately, I am being moved up to the High School next year so I won’t see her for a year before she comes up to the HS, but I can only hope that I gave her some basic skills and helped her obtain the services she needs. I can only hope that these interventions, supports, advocacy and encouragement will have a positive impact that will give her hope and set her up for a successful future. This has been one of the most intense, most frustrating, and most rewarding experiences of my career. So, thank you for giving me the knowledge and power to go to bat for this particular student!
Smiles, Bev

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