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Friday, February 5, 2010

Cream of the Crop!

Chad and my grand daughters on the steps of the Iowa state capital

"I only pass the cream of the crop, and you're not it." Those are the words my sons electronics teacher told him when he entered this class in high school, to pursue his dream of becoming an electrician. And to add insult to injury, it was only the second day of school. Chad was crushed, and felt quite defeated. It seems the "cream of the crop" were the popular kids, the kids who had wealthy backgrounds, those who the teacher felt buttered his bread more than the other students. Feeling defeated, Chad decided to not go to class, as transferring to a different class was not allowed. So he skipped. Every day. I received calls from the principal daily, stating that my son was a trouble maker, probably on drugs, and not a good student to have in his school. My son was none of these. He was a good student, and yes it was wrong to skip classes, but he felt he had no option, as this teacher pegged him as not electrician material from the get go. Eventually, the principal called and said he didn't want Chad at his school. Me being divorced, Chad felt his only option was to move back with his father to complete his school year. As bad as I wanted him to stay home with me, I understood if he was to graduate this was the best thing and his only shot at graduating. He went to his father's, where he signed up for the electronics class, same curriculum, and aced the class. What a difference a teacher makes. And a principal that gets it. After graduation, and a couple different jobs, Chad found an electrical company that agreed to hire him as an apprentice, since he had such potential, which was discovered in his class. He quickly went from apprentice to a journeyman, and then taking the test, a master electrician. Today he lives just outside Des Moines Iowa, and is the general foreman for all substations in over half of Iowa state. I can't begin to tell you how proud I am of my son. He has a beautiful wife, and I have two of the most gorgeous, fun, grand daughters. If Chad had allowed his former teacher and principal to defeat him, this never would have happened. I love my son dearly, and if you live in an area of Iowa where there is currently no power, you better believe Chad is on top of it, and is working tirelessly to fix the problem! Go Chad!! I have your back!!!!


quiltingnana said...

I can see your point about Chad...so many talented young people are put off by such comments....my brother was told by his high school English teacher (in front of his class) that his parents were wasting their money sending him to a big university and that he'd never make it through his freshman year...needless to say, he got an
A in freshman English and PhD from that same university.

Laurie said...

quiltingnana: That's so great! Teachers really need to do just that, teach. They aren't there to humiliate, and cast judgement. Too many teachers confuse their job discription. Good for him!!

Diane said...

That teacher was not teacher material. He should have been fired. It's too bad people like that have any control over young people's brains.

That said, your son is a great guy to have overcome that. And he must have wanted to become an electrician a LOT!

Good for him!!!

Anonymous said...

My friend and I were recently discussing about how modern society has evolved to become so integrated with technology. Reading this post makes me think back to that debate we had, and just how inseparable from electronics we have all become.

I don't mean this in a bad way, of course! Ethical concerns aside... I just hope that as technology further advances, the possibility of transferring our memories onto a digital medium becomes a true reality. It's a fantasy that I daydream about all the time.

(Posted on Nintendo DS running [url=http://quizilla.teennick.com/stories/16129580/does-the-r4-or-r4i-work-with-the-new-ds]nintendo dsi r4i[/url] DS Qezv2)

Tolentreasures said...

Good for him and good for you for sacrificing your own needs and letting him pursue his goals. Had to be tough!

What a happy ending!


Pearl said...

OH Momma you should be very proud as you are and please tell me you looked up this old teacher at the old school and showed him this fine young mans diplomas? He really should be made aware of his actions. I just love story's like this how people triumph! I on the other hand at that tender age would have folded like a deck of cards. But now? Oh please don't let me get started, let's just say no one pushes my buttons anymore. Tell your son that I greatly admire him. Thanks for this blog Laurie, Pearl

Kim said...

Being a teacher, I'm so sad to hear about the very unprofessional teacher and principal you son had. Unfortunately they are both still out there. How wonderful that your son overcame the situation and fulfilled his dream. As an Iowa who loves electricity(LOL) I'm thankful for the job he does!

Jayne said...

What a huge difference a place and teacher can make. So many times, kids are judged or labeled and then begin to believe what they are told about themselves. I am so glad that you supported and loved him through it Laurie. I can see why you are so very proud of the man he has become. :c)

Colleen said...

What a sweet and proud post this is :-) While you're lucky to have Chad, he is very lucky to have YOU!

Lois said...

I can see why you are so proud of your son but you should be proud of yourself too! You had the foresight to let him move to his dad's place when you could have insisted he stay with you. I bet that was a hard thing (for your heart) to do.