Student Stories

SOPHIA\'S STORY

SOPHIA’S STORY

I can honestly say that San Antonio Can was one of the most life changing times in my life.

Most students at Can are a little broken, lost, and alone. But we all realize that we slowly become a family.
Unlike other student stories, mine is pretty different. We all struggled in our previous schools. When you aren’t engaged and when you feel left out, most will of course lose their drive. In school I just couldn’t find my place.

At home my parents were on and off, my father was in and out, and my mother got lost in a hole of depression.
When my dad officially left, my sister chose to take his side in this ugly split and move with him. My mother lost herself, her job, and our home. She decided the best thing for her would be to go home, to Michigan, so she could be with her mother.

Trying to be the supportive daughter, I of course encouraged her to go. I knew that I personally had a place with my boyfriend and his family. I didn’t want to return to Michigan. I had finally found a comfort zone here, with my boyfriend, who has and continues to support me through all of the hard times.
I told my mother if she wanted to take care of us she would need to begin to take care of herself again.

I started to lose my drive for education during my sophomore year. My grades definitely dropped, but I pushed through regardless of what was going on at home. I didn’t want to draw any attention from my parents.

When my junior year started, my dad had moved out, my mother had lost her job and never left her room. I would leave for school in the morning, but I wouldn’t stay longer than lunch time. I would barely make it to 3 classes every day, out of 7 classes that was pretty disappointing.
I tried to keep up with my other classes via email, but once Thanksgiving break approached a counselor informed me that I wouldn’t receive my credits due to my lack of attendance. The first option that came to mind was to just give up. I was ready to just drop out. I was going to have to start junior year all over again. I didn’t want to do that. I’ve never failed at anything in my life, and hearing that I was about to fail, it truly broke something inside of me. So I immediately started looking into what my alternative options were.

The counselor knew I wasn’t going to school, and she didn’t seem to believe that I would change my bad habit so she suggested online homeschooling.
It seemed easier to just push me out than have me start over there. I was sitting in the school library one morning and another student mentioned getting withdrawn from our current school, and transferring to a charter school.

She made it seem so easy, explaining that its half day and you can graduate faster even if you are currently behind. It was sounded perfect.
I didn’t want to stay another minute at my school. That same day I had my mother come withdrawal me. As I was leaving the office the women made a snobby comment to me that went something like, “make sure to bring us your transcripts when you want to come back.” It was so discouraging that these women didn’t believe I would succeed or that they thought I would regret my decision.

I truly believe that in that moment my fire sparked up again.
When I started at Can I quickly realized the speed in which you graduate is based on each individual student and their personal drive.
This school is extremely fast paced. Every single day there is equivalent to 3 days at your regular schools. It honestly comes down how to much you want to achieve your goals and how hard you are willing to work. The teachers at this school are truly the best teacher’s you’ll ever meet.
It was the middle of their second term and I caught up fast which was intriguing to them. My algebra teacher loved my ability to stand in front of the class and preach my method, or my solutions. I loved helping my classmates.

My English teacher became a women I could rely on and she encouraged my dreams. I loved the responsibility of helping with lesson plans and reading to my class. I loved that when I would explain or summarize the passages we just read, it made it easier for students to comprehend and even get interested.
In all honesty, the person who had made the greatest impact on my life, was my history teacher. He took a great interest in me when he saw my passion for education.

With his help, I received commended scores in all five of my Standardized State Tests. I spent half of my school day in his class, absorbing every ounce of knowledge possible. His class is where I learned what Can is all about.
We all come from different backgrounds, we all weren’t successful in our previous schools, and we all needed this last chance to make it right.
Most students at Can are ready to overcome this last obstacle of childhood and graduate, especially because most of us are already dealing with adult like challenges.

If there was ever any doubt in your mind, I’m proud to say that this school has been the greatest blessing to us.
Yes, it is every student’s individual choice to accept this kind of help. We all accept that we can’t change our pasts and where we come from, but the teachers and staff are ALWAYS there.

They never give up on these kids. They believe in us, they fight for us, they encourage us and because of them, we all graduate wanting nothing more than to make them proud of the people we choose to become next.
In January, I graduated Salutatorian of my class. I remember the principal telling me that he had to do the math multiple times between the valedictorian and myself because we were so close.

Now I dream of becoming a teacher and helping students achieve their full potential. I hope to start at UTSA, next year and Graduate from UT with a masters in teaching and child development.
Everything I learned about the students and myself at Can, has only made my goals crystal clear.
There will always be children in need, of love and encouragement, and we all just need someone to believe in us.

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