NY Times: This Smart Girl Says Thank You

John Gress/Reuters

True Grit

According Nicholas Kristof of The New York Times, “In 2011, a malnourished 14-year-old Vietnamese village girl named Phung arose in the wee hours each morning in a herculean struggle to get an education. After I wrote about her, readers responded with a torrent of $750,000 in donations to Room to Read, the aid organization helping her.”

The word grit is often used to describe the character traits necessary for a teacher to be successful in a challenging school environment. It is often applied to teachers, but Phung, a student exemplifies grit, and she is not the only one. The Nicholas Kristof article makes me think about students who are demonstrating true grit every day.

For example, in Chicago, a city often referred to as Chiraq, due to the overwhelming number of young people who are killed by violent crime each year, many young people walk to school under threat of violence each day. This is in addition to the burdens of life in poverty. Do they give up? No, they persevere, and at the same time somehow find a way to focus on academics. This is true grit. What are we doing to support them, our students in our country? Why can’t we raise $750,000 for them? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Walter Duncan is the teacher Co-Creator of the Quick Key App, which allows teachers to grade paper assessments with their smart devices. Please go to www.quickkeyapp.com to find out more.

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