I am so happy to be writing to you. I am truly amazed at what you have accomplished for your students. I admire you for not giving up on the "below average" students. What you did keeps me in awe of you. As i read the book tears rolled down my cheeks, because as i read i found my self in the pages. Just like you told your students that they might find them selves in the books they read. I certainly did find myself in The Freedom Writer Diary. I felt as if i was reading one of my own diaries. I believe you and your students are an inspiration to me, and many other children, an even many teachers.
You took the time to listen to your students, you took the time understand them and be there for them, when everyone else thought that there was no point in investing in them. Sometimes that is all someone needs, someone to listen and be there for them. You also supported them an encouraged them to do the what was right. You supported them when everyone else put them down. That not only took a lot of guts, because of what could have happened to you, but that also must have taken a lot of heart. I am sure that you knew that if you helped them and encouraged them their might be conflicts with other teachers,and students. Yet you cared about them, you wanted to see them break the cycle that was set in their lives. With teachers like you their can be a difference in the next generation, instead of all the hate i have seen. I also admire the Freedom Writer Students, because they did not just write about their misery. They took an action when they let you read it. It showed that they were willing to trust you. Maybe they wanted your help, an hoping that if you read it you would not be like the other teachers. I can understand your students. I have faced many difficulties in my life just like they did, and at such a young age. I understand the joy they must have felt knowing that you took the time to listen and not criticize them for not doing better, but instead encouraged them to want to do better and want to change. With you as their teacher they truly must have felt that the sky was the limit. Reading their diaries made me realize that i am not alone.Reading the diaries inspired me to go beyond all the limits that have been set in my life.
I thank you for what you did for those students. It may have not effected me directly, but knowing that someone took all that time to invest in a child that was considered unteachable, brings joy to my heart that at least one more child out there will not grow up with hate in their hearts but with hope.
I am in awe of both you and your students.