“My students respect me because I respect them; the economic and racial barriers are down because we chose to take them down.”


Poverty is a debilitating factor that plagues the lives of millions all over the world. It is a force that robs away the mental, physical and emotional peace of every person facing it. It’s a difficult feat that makes rising to the top seem impossible for many. Students who enter school with the mind and the pain of poverty may not have much interest or desire for learning. Their situations may be a tiresome feat they have to deal with everyday. However, there are educators who strive to make sure that these poverty stricken students can achieve anything.

In a piece in Education Week, Casie Jones of the MLK Student Transition Academy in Memphis City Schools shows an extraordinary amount of care, diligence and passion towards the success of her students. She doesn’t let the differences she has with her students stop her from making sure they are provided with quality education. She steps into their lives to make sure they’re doing what is needed to prepare them for college and beyond. Ms. Jones has an honest interest in their education and excites them to come back to school every day regardless of the difficulties waiting for them at home. She gave them confidence and the skills they needed to succeed by just believing in them. This article moved and placed a huge glimmer of reassurance in me that ALL students can achieve. With dedicated teachers like her, I’m sure college can be a possibility for everyone.