Ilfaut Joseph is a math coach at Sligh Middle Magnet.
I love working here, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. I’ve been teaching for 17 years. That’s a long time, but I choose to do what I love – teaching the students.
The students want to learn. If you show that you care for them and you have fun with them, they’re going to work.
What I enjoy the most is when the students have a problem and I show them different ways to figure it out; the excitement and joy when they finally do is just great. You won’t believe it until you walk in my shoes.
I have a goal that is a 100 percent passing rate. Over time you can see how they make gains and that is huge. That’s a celebration for me. When I see them learning, that’s what drives me home smiling, and I can’t wait for the next day to start all over.
It’s not about the money at all. It’s about them learning over time and how they grow; the respect that I gain from them, it’s a beautiful thing.
I want them to see the human side of me; I’m not just a math machine. We joke and have fun, but it’s all about the mutual understanding. I’m going to respect you, I’m here to teach you, I’m here to make you better, and in return, I need you to do the same. Once we have that mutual respect, the teaching is easy.
When talking about Achievement Schools, most people don’t really understand it. But when you look at kids, you see kids as kids. It doesn’t matter where they are, they all want to learn.
We need parental support, we need administration support, but at the end of the day, everything begins with the teacher. As long as we have the right teacher in front of the students, all kids will show gains.
This is Why #WeAchieveTogether.
Do you know a dedicated Achievement Schools leader, teacher, staff or community member who you would like to see featured in Why #WeAchieveTogether? To nominate someone, contact Kendra Oestreich, Communications: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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