Fantastic teachers stay with us forever. That’s why I’ll never forget Yolonda Hendricks.
She was my fifth-grade teacher, and I looked up to her because she was young and stylish and seemed to love me. When I was hospitalized for two months, she came to visit me every weekday and brought along my school work so I wouldn’t fall behind.
When I finally returned to school, the administration tried to hold me back because I had missed so much class. But Ms. Hendricks stood up for me. She was my advocate, along with my mother, and insisted to everyone that I was ready for sixth grade.
I hope there are still teachers like her out in the world, advocating for their students and helping them no matter what the situation is. If you know a teacher like this, use this opportunity to say thanks. My story happened back in 1972, but it’s never escaped me. All children deserve that feeling of having a teacher recognize their ability to excel. It’s something you never forget.