My daughter, Natalie Rose, is a first-grader at Success Academy Bronx 3 and a member of the Class of 2030. That’s right, the Class of 2030. That’s the year Natalie will graduate from college. I have no doubt my daughter will not only attend college, but, unlike me, she will graduate.
I grew up in the Bronx, and I’ve lived there all my life. I went to traditional public schools through middle school, and what happened to me is still happening to kids all across the Bronx today. I was socially promoted. It didn’t matter if I’d mastered seventh grade math or if I was behind in science or if I wasn’t reading all that well – they just kept passing me along.
By the time I got to high school — I was just lost. I went to Cardinal Hayes High School, a Catholic school in the Bronx, and I had a tough time. I was behind everyone else. I got there and I just wasn’t prepared. I couldn’t do the math, couldn’t keep up with my classes. I hadn’t read the books that everyone else had.
I didn’t want that for my daughter. I know that today, in the world we live in, education is more important than ever. I wasn’t going to let her be passed along. I feel fortunate that we found Success Academy, where Natalie is excelling in reading and math. Her skills are beyond what mine were when I was her age.
In Albany, I was proud to share what my daughter has been able to accomplish at a great school and to stand with other parents who also believe that all children deserve a quality education.