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Summerhill Community Ministries Newsletter Jan Feb06


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Summerhill Community Ministries Newsletter Jan Feb06

  1. 1. Summerhill Community Ministries, Inc. January~February 2006 Serving Inner-City Youth and Families thought he was getting the lessons praise him for his good conduct. He until she gave the end of the year receives after school tutoring on assessment test. I was heart-broken Wednesdays as well as my help with and in disbelief. I wanted someone to his homework (After I leave the ASP, I take the blame and explain to me how am on duty to help my own kids.) this happened. I never received an Now, it is 2006 and Justin’s senior year. answer, but I did find out that 7 other Since, it is mandatory for all the children in Justin’s class significantly seniors to meet with their counselor performed below grade level. (This near the beginning of the year, Justin teacher retired the next year.) and his brother Joel (who is also a Although the first grade teacher tried senior) met with their counselor and her best to work with these children brought me back a sheet saying that who were way behind, Justin’s self- Justin was on track and Joel would Justina Dix esteem continued to decline. We have to make up a class in night decided to have him tested and held school. Later that week, I strongly felt A Mother’s Heart - him back in the first grade to help him catch up. After testing, it was the need to meet with the counselor myself. As she began to go through determined that Justin had a learning the transcripts, she got a bit confused. Education Concerns disability (LD). He learned at a slower pace and needed extra time to After several more meetings with conflicting information, I expressed What mother am I talking about? This complete work. He was put into all (Continued on page 2) time, it’s me. In 1991 I was a young resourced special education classes wife and mother of three. I really (SPED), which caused him to endure wanted to be a good mother and be ridicule from other children. Summerhill Community involved in my children’s education, I immediately began to pray for his Ministries will be featured so I made a commitment to volunteer at my children’s school a few times a learning, comprehension and self- in the February edition of esteem, as I’ve done with all of my month. My son Justin, who gave me children. After a couple of years of the PCA magazine, "By permission to tell his story in hopes that this won’t keep happening to praying and working with Justin after Faith." Look for it soon! school, he began to make the honor students, was in kindergarten and roll in his LD classes. I attended four very shy and quiet. When I constantly asked his teacher how he was doing academically, she always assured me meetings a year to discuss Justin’s progress and where he would be the We Made the Grade! next year. By 5th grade, he was Our volunteers do make a difference that he was doing just fine. To my mainstreamed into 2 general in the lives of our kids. When report surprise however, at the end of the education classes and attended cards came out last week, almost all year she called for a conference. resource for the other subjects. In of our students had a 100% During the conference she stunned middle school, he was doing so well me with some of the worst news a improvement from midterm grades. that he only required resource parent could hear from a teacher 7 of our kids made the Honor Roll. support for 2 classes. When he about their child. reached high school, the only class he Thanks volunteers for the one-on- I was told that my child was not on was resourced for was 9th grade one tutoring and care you give to the the academic level he should be on; Literature. He succeeded in both students. as a matter of fact he was way semesters with an A and a B. behind. I asked this teacher of 40 From the very beginning, I told Justin years how could this be when I had inquired about his progress several times and was always given positive, he is going to have to work really hard to pass his classes. His goal is to Next issue - receive a regular education diploma. good news. She went on to explain how Justin had her fooled. She All of Justin’s teachers speak of his determination to “make it”. They SUCCESS STORIES!
  2. 2. January~February 2006 Summerhill Community Ministries, Inc. (Continued from page 1) yet, something like this still happens. my aggravation at this whole back and forth process and pleaded for a I also learned that almost half of the seniors will not graduate on time Christmas Cheer simple answer to my simple question. because they don’t have enough We truly appreciate all of our It took 3 more meetings and a new credits or they have not passed parts supporters for making Christmas counselor to get me the accurate of the High School Graduation Test. a happy time for our ASP kids. information. The school has now added a summer The response was overwhelming graduation program for students. It’s Joel did not have to take a night and the wrapping party a great sad that the goals for our kids are school class; he was on track to success. We especially want to changing. It used to be an honor for graduate. However, Justin did not get thank all of our Sponsors, students to walk with their class. If credit for the year of the 9th grade Volunteers and East Cobb adults are not motivating the kids to literature classes because it was Presbyterian Church and Christ look forward to this, how will they under the SPED program. He would Church for their generosity and stay motivated to finish? Parental have to take the classes during the faithfulness. involvement is critical to insure our summer and graduate then. Again, children are getting the education my heart dropped. It was worse than they deserve and need. hearing news of his learning disability. Justin has made his decision. Though How You Can Help he could graduate with a special ed diploma and walk with his class in • Cleaning supplies: big garbage bags, June, he without hesitation mopping & cleaning solutions announced, “Although I really want • Snacks for 25 ASP kids (5 days a week) to walk with my class, I’ve worked • Gently used or new 15 passenger van too hard for a regular diploma, and • Van maintenance (clean, change oil, that’s what I want.” Our entire family rotate tires or put on new tires, tune up, supports him. Please pray for him repair windshield crack, brakes and for the many students who are • Paper Goods: paper towels, napkins, falling through the cracks of “lacking toilet paper, plates, silverware, cups credits” and lacking parental and • TV and VCR school support to look forward to a • A working computer with internet access hope and a bright future. (Pentium 4 and up) Justina Dix • Color printer • Copier paper (white and colored) • Fax/scanner/printer/copier (4 in one Justin Save Summerhill postage! machine) Questions formed in my mind: Why Please consider receiving this • Up-to-date dictionaries didn’t the counselors catch this…isn’t newsletter via email. To be • Stamps, envelopes it their job to make sure students are added to the list, email • Gift cards to Office Depot/Staples or Wal- getting the classes they need? It’s Mart for office supplies been 3 years and we could have • Electric heaters made this up if we had only known. • Boxed cards for birthdays, The guidance office offered their apologies and assigned blame to the SCM Basketball encouragement, illness, condolences • Basketballs, footballs, and soccer balls former counselors. I followed up this meeting with phone calls to the Board (WE GOT GAME) • BP gas cards for vans • Ongoing monthly contributions and one- of Education. Although special Both of our basketball teams are time gifts. permission was granted to receive undefeated as we go into our 4th credit for one class, the decision on week of play. Most importantly, our Can you teach an enrichment or life skill with our the other one is still pending. Justin’s young men are demonstrating 25 After School kids? We have a 30 minute time teachers are rooting for him as well as his peers. One teacher and strength of character and good frame set aside for this activity. Some examples counselor stated that it is not often sportsmanship by refusing the are dance, music, drama, arts-n-crafts, cooking, that a student starts out in special challenges of the opposing team to sewing, wood works, sign language, pottery, education and works their way out to get in a fight. Thank you to our gardening, etiquette, cosmetology, how to: tie a tie, a regular diploma. coaches and our prayer partners change a tire, etc.. If you have something you for uplifting and supporting our might be interested in sharing, please call or email I thought about how I have tried to be youth. Justina. there for my kids and their education P. O. Box 160294 • Atlanta, Georgia 30316 • 404-964-4604 • •