Aya is a full-time AmeriCorps member serving with Communities in Schools of Durham at Eno Valley Elementary. Communities in Schools (CIS) aims to reduce high school drop out rates by targeting students with attendance, behavior, or academic struggles and use mentoring and one-on-one relationships between students and CIS staff to support students in getting back on the track to success.
As I watch my students who I’ve only known for a year but love as if its been much longer, I can’t help but feel a sense of both pride and anticipation for them. I am proud of the young ladies and gentlemen these 5th graders have become. While we’ve certainly experienced our share of difficulties and struggles this year, I have also witnessed moments of incredible character, growth, and perseverance that I know will serve these students well not only in middle school, but for the rest of their lives.
These children live in a world vastly different from the one I experienced as an elementary school student. They carry within them a sense of boldness and strength I think is necessary for challenging the status quo. These kids are leaving a place of safety and security, many of them attending Eno Valley since pre-school and kindergarten. They will enter new doors in the fall, with new teachers, new classmates, and will be molding themselves into new, better, stronger, bolder versions of their elementary school selves. They will take with them the spirit of compassion, of excitement, and of love, and use those to reach heights they didn’t even know existed. Just as I have watched these children master material, improve dramatically in behavior, and find value in service, I know they will make the best of what is in store for them.
CIS Students Receiving their Awards CIS Staff at Eno Valley