My son forgot his lunch today, and I’m so glad he did.
With mid-school and the growing independence of my 12-year-old, I don’t get to experience much beyond the drop-off circle. But today, with the excuse of delivering said forgotten lunch, I got venture inside. I must admit, darkening the door of a mid-school still makes me break out in a cold sweat. But, strolling past kids enjoying a beautiful, sunny, morning PE class on the grassy field, I followed the signs to the office, and boldly entered the hallways of Jefferson Middle School.
A few adorable young ladies graced me with smiles as they were hanging up anti-bullying posters. The sound of teachers’ voices, raised not in frustration, but in enthusiastic interaction, could be heard through the doors. The sound of students milling about and chattering arose out of the next room. Rounding the corner, I arrived at the office, where a few polite students were hanging out as the office staff humorously recounted their morning breakfast burrito mishap. Everyone was not only nice and helpful, but I walked out the door feeling downright happy and uplifted. And that wasn’t all.
The same PE class I saw in the field was now returning to the building, students respectfully walking in little groups of friends, followed by the smiling PE teacher, who gave me yet another happy greeting. Then the icing on the cake: upon my return to the visitor parking lot, the sound of the acclaimed Rock and Rhythm BandTM, with live rock music blaring through the walls of the new music building. How cool is that!? (Check out this program and the incredible teacher, Robb Janov, that leads it: http://www.midschoolrock.com/rock_and_rhythm_band/Home.html).
This is the untold story of our public schools here in Albuquerque. The part of the story that makes me proud and grateful that I get to raise my child here. The picture of an environment that is filled with really great people doing really great things for our younger generations. I’m not blind to the issues and challenges, but I’m certainly not going to turn a blind eye to great glimpse of hope I got today.
So, here’s to all the unsung heroes who spend their days at school with our kids…not just at Jefferson Middle School, but throughout our public, charter, and private schools. Thanks for sticking with it! And thanks for helping make this yet another reason I love it here.
-Mandy Herzog, Marketing | Vista Encantada Realtors, LLC