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I know you guys probably get tired of hearing me brag on my students but I must share the story that happened today at work. I am a fifth grade teacher at one of the poorest schools in Decatur. In 2005 I started working at a school in Decatur that was really poor also. Last year was my second class of fifth graders that graduated high school. I had two students find me at my new school last year and invite me to graduation one received a football scholarship to Tuskegee and the other had an academics scholarship. I was out a half day yesterday to see my son graduate preschool and when I got back to school I had a graduation invitation in my mailbox. It was from a little boy I had in fifth grade in 2006 named Eddy. I thought well that was nice of Eddy but didn't think much more about it. Well about 9:30 we are having math class and I hear a knock on the door. In walks Eddy with a huge grin on his face just like I remembered him in fifth grade always smiling. I welcomed him and introduced him to this years class of fifth graders. He had a nice long talk with my class about all the good times we had in fifth grade and told the kids about how I pushed him to be the best and didn't let him make excuses. He then shared with the class that he is graduating this year from Decatur high. He has an academic scholarship and a soccer scholarship to the University of Alabama at Birmingham! A full ride and he is going to be premed with a goal of becoming a heart surgeon. Talk about making my day! I walked around all day with my chest poked out like he was my own son. He even wrote me a very nice letter thanking me for his success. It was so funny to hear his recollections of fifth grade. He remembered the day we wrote about our most embarrassing moments ever and Maurice wrote about the time he spent the night with his grandma and forgot to pack his underwear and had to wear his grandmas pink underwear. He remembered the little things we did together as a class that helped us bond and create friendships for a shy kid like him. He was really amazed when I broke out his fifth grade class picture. He took a good walk down memory lane as he checked out the friends he had not seen since fifth grade. He updated me on several of those students and mainly it was good news about those guys. Here is Eddy now, and in fifth grade(front row center), and the letter that he had written to me.


 

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What a legacy you are leaving, Mr. V.!!

Yes, a single teacher can make a huge difference in the life of a child...regardless of the circumstances.

Do any of y'all remember the movie "To Sir, With Love", starring Sidney Poitier? It came out in 1967 so it's an 'old' one, but it deals with a very similar situation. I am not a Poitier fan, but he did a great job in this movie.
 

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Way to go, I don't know how anyone has enough patience to do your job, we need more like you. I wish you had more hepl from the home side, I think that's where too many problems start. Keep up the good work.
 

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Great (true) story. Teachers can and do make a difference. And once in a while a student remembers the good times and his (mentor) favorite teacher. Great job. Keep up the great work.
 
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