Friday, December 5, 2008

I Want to Help

To Whom It May Concern:

You won’t believe the things I’ve seen. My ‘little’ in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program has parents that left him because of jail or drugs and a grandmother that has abandoned him. He gets suspended and sent home (to his wonderful 80-year-old great-grandmother) if so much as his peer next to him curses. Strength, resolve and hope have never been better displayed in a person—and he’s now repeating the 6th grade. Students from the wrong areas that visit the museum I work at walk in with holes in their shoes and are teased by their fellow students that are really no better off. Again and again, there are the grim signs of hardship breeding apathy among the most needing students. I need your help.

It’s been my only vocational ambition to close the educational gap. I’ll give anything and everything I have to do it right. Here’s how I have failed thus far. I have yet to secure an inner-city teaching post as I refuse to subject myself to the process of substitute teaching to earn my spot as a full-time teacher. I have also made the mistake of becoming a History teacher with no paid, in-school experience. I would teach Science or Math if I had greater enthusiasm for the subjects or could afford to go back to earn either of those undergraduate degrees. Now my license is expiring because I haven’t found a teaching post and then taken the PRAXIS III test to earn my 5 year license. I have fought this, but I’m now willing to accept that I’m being pushed out of this part of the system. But I can’t sit on the sidelines and watch these students’ potential decay. I want to get back in the game.

As well as a Social Studies teacher, I’ve taken on loans to move forward as a graduate student of Public Administration. I can teach, assist in governmental delivery of educational services, or both. Do you know of anywhere that could use me? I’ve only found closed doors so far. I’m willing to put everything on the line and start my own non-profit to tutor failing students one-on-one and organize others to do the same—but I don’t know if there’s state of federal funding for such a small-scale endeavor.  Is there a place for me to find an engaging career in education reform? 

Sincerely,

Dan Adiletta