Written by Lucas Braley
Monday, 18 October 2010 19:08
“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” -Mark Twain
Too many times, it seemed, that teachers rolled their eyes. I had noticed that something was off about the student-teacher dynamic in my traditional Junior-Senior High School when a failing student was a chore for the teacher: Not because the teacher had to try and help him do better but because the teacher had to suffer through having this kid in his class. Also, when the limit of a student government’s authority is to organize and fund raise for dances, it cannot be said that the school’s administration is by the students and for the students.
These were some of the reasons I had for leaving my old school and applying to the public school of choice, Monadnock Community Connections. Unfortunately, I cannot claim to have been drawn in by the numerous admirable qualities of the program. At this point in my education, I was rather more concerned with escaping the jagged jaws of academic apathy than finding the ideal education for me. Sometimes the best things in life show themselves to us when we least expect them.
I don’t know what kind of person I would be today if I hadn’t made the choice to come to this school. I certainly wouldn’t have become a published reporter. I probably wouldn’t even be working on my novel. Though important, these aren’t the qualities that I am most proud of developing through Monadnock Community Connections. There was something that I got out of my personalized education that extends above and beyond what anyone expected from me: Hope.
Finding happiness in education is an idea as ancient as the Greeks, but very few people really like to talk about faith in public education. Whether it is the separation of Church and State or the lack of empiricism, it is a touchy subject that either gets uncomfortably pushed out of sight, or if not, the subject of heated debate. Either way, a curriculum established by a public school administration cannot hold religious bias. Only a curriculum crafted by the student would work, but who’s ever heard of such a thing?
When I came to MC2 (Monadnock Community Connections), I was a miserable teen fresh from his first year in High School. I had given up on hope and despaired of the fate of mankind. All I could see was the avariciousness and the loathing that I perceived everywhere. I had no interest in the beauty of discovery, nor did I have any aspirations or sense of purpose.
I believe that life is a story. Mine, like many before me, is one that begins with a fall from Grace. Telling that part of my story is unnecessary for the story I am going to tell you, but it is by no means unimportant. This story is one that begins at the climax and concludes far before the back cover closes. This story is the one about how I found hope, how I learned to love and how I found my love of learning.