by Deb Landry, Principal – HT Wing School
In schools at which the faculty values effort-based ability, teachers constantly remind students of three crucial messages (Saphier, 2005):
- This is important
- You can do it
- I will not give up on you
When I read the above quote, I think of the talented and terrific Wing School staff that you met at Open House. What makes Wing wonderful is that our teachers and staff members believe in our students and will go the extra mile to ensure their success. Daily, teachers help students to understand that being smart is “something you can get” and not just “something with which you are born.”
Believing that all students have natural abilities, and that academic competence can be grown, is a foundational principle of learning communities, including our dedicated Wing teachers. It is students’ effective effort that is the main component of achievement and growth that will have the most lasting impact on the Wing students this year.
If you have ever had a teacher or someone in your life that believed in you and consistently communicated to you that you were an able, valuable person who could and would do great things, like I did, then you will relate well to the following. In my elementary school days, that first person (and not the last) was Ms. Johnson, my second grade teacher. She believed in me—upon reflection— in a way that several others did not. Because of her faith in me, she helped me to believe that I could achieve my goals. She was one of my inspirations for going into the teaching profession namely by convincing me that I was able and valuable when I was in her class. Interestingly, when I was in college, she would see my folks at a local breakfast nook and catch up on what my brother and I were doing in our lives (she was his teacher the next year), and when my parents told her of my aspirations to teach, she revealed that she always thought that I would become a teacher one day. I am amazed to this day that she saw that in me as a seven year old child and that she remembered me all those years later!
Thank you parents and guardians, for entrusting your children to our amazing staff, for each of our staff members will be some young Wing student’s Ms. Johnson, inspiring him or her by constantly showing them in a variety of ways that, “This is important work…you can do it…I will not give up on you! “(Saphier, 2005)