From Foster Care to VA Teacher of the Year Feat. Anthony Swann


Read anthony that you grew up in the foster care system when you you think about growing up in foster care. How do you share getting past the trauma than seeing and knowing all the other potential you had. Do you have a moment in time. Do you have a person who influenced you question. Most definitely so. When i was taken to fall secure i was taken abruptly in the middle of the school day and i was sitting in fourth grade classroom and are distinctly. Remember social services Door and telling my teacher that they needed me to come with them and this was in front of all of my friends and saw felt embarrassed fell devastated and so ma teacher. I'm sorry i'm trying not to cry. My teacher came out in the hallway and she grabbed me and she hugged me. And she whispered in my ear and social services didn't even hear it but she whispered in my ear. She said anthony. Everything is going to be all right in that same teacher years down the road. She found me when i was fourteen years old and she began to pour into me as she began to. Just say i don't want you to grow up to be like your parents. I don't want you to get up to the system. I don't want you to go to jail. I want you to make something of yourself. And so by that time. I had started claims school. Because i'm gonna take all of my trauma and just put it into my academics loss to start playing school. I told her. I wanted to be a teacher. And she said that what you want to become. I'm going to support you in any way. That i can and so once. I was going to school and going to college and put amount self through college. My senior year did not have a car to get to my student teaching placement and she picked me up every single morning to take me to school before she had to be at school herself and to this day she still calls me and she still reminds me that. Everything's gonna be alright and she still tells me. Do you remember that. I told you at now get you. And so that was one of the persons who geared me. Because i was going the deep end because i didn't understand alive. I hated my life. Which that i was dead a. She took the extra mile because she saw something in me. So that i would not become part of the system as she pushed me to be great. Oh the love of a teacher in for her to recognize an anthony. I didn't wanna cry either. But the ability for that teacher to recognize into know and to see your face and to take that moment to run out and whisper that in your ear. That's everything right. That is just a moment. that probably is why you did not display school. You did school. You earned those achievements and wanting to become a teacher. Do you mind sharing her name. I would love for her to hear you give a shout out. Her name is mrs gerardo wilson. And she's still alive today. She's a retired educator for public schools. And she's just that's her name. Miss wilson we give you lots of hearts in love because that's a skill set anna an intuition that we all want to possess in hope that we can be that for that student in any student when you think about yourself now anthony and even before becoming teacher of the year. Do you see that you have that ability that other teachers see there something that he possesses that would benefit me had any encounters with other teachers where they want in are seeking out your advice. Yes a have. You seen before. Became virginia state teacher of the year or or even. Maybe it's happened since your name's been out there in your story is out there. There may be teachers. And i think i read this in one of the articles where a teacher heard. Your story heard your work with students and it's like how is he breaking barriers with students. In how can he help me. Yes so i was contacted by a teacher retired teacher. She was a mentor to a young male student and after her reading must stores. She contacted me and she said know. I just really have this student. I feel like that you can reach him because they're certain areas. I can't reach him in. Your story is so similar to history and so with the permission of the guardian traveled to meet with him. One one Share with him a story and he shared with me historic and at the end of that conversation. Before i left we have similar stories but before i left he looked at me and he says just more you know what anything is possible and that statement right there made all the difference because that is my platform is virginia teacher. The years to give hope to those students who find themselves in dramatic situations and emotionally disturbing homes to let them know that no matter the pieces that you may have been dealt. If they're broken take those broken pieces and build a bridge to better life in in heart of your platform you have. What i believe is part of your cooperative culture initiative of guys with ties. How did you create guys with ties. And can you share with our listeners. What the program is yes. So one day mock principal just came to me and she had this idea. She's just like see how you dress up every day. I think it'll be a program if we just have the fifth grade boys to dress up. Enticing me with him so she just really just threw something out there. So i kinda picked it up like a fumble and iran with an from of develop a curriculum that respect and integrity and cleanliness in. It's okay to be organized as a male is okay to to help and they also in the group we have those those hard conversations because a lot of the males do not have a father figure in the home. And so we talk about how you can overcome rejection in las share with the story. We do service projects when we're talking about the cleanliness in the organization. We take time out with. We are meeting. We have a day where we go around. And we help the audience in the school to pick up trash to attack him the rugs and the school. We also have done a service project where we give all of. The girls are carnation a bag of chocolate to let the boys know how to treat a lady so we also we just recently did one where the guys designed their own tie. And i'm going to have someone someone actually reached out to leeann. They're going to create that tie so just letting them know that it's okay to be guy. Mb sophisticated but at the same time teaching them those life skills teaching them about. What would your legacy be if you were to die today. Will people say about you. And i got that particular lesson when koby bryant passed away over year ago out of the blue but so many people have so many good things to say about him and so on and steal that the guys as well would let us here you leaving. How will people remember hugh if you were to pass away and that was a very powerful lesson is ill on. The group is safe haven. The guys have cried before especially the guys who feel neglected a male figures. So i've hit the other students. Who had the fathers in the home to console those students to let them know. It's okay you're going to be you're going to make something of yourself. So those are the types of things that we do in the

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