Stephen Foster Elementary
Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
With a Sister’s Love and a Community’s Support, Hard Work Leads to Success
Whitney Casion’s fifth grade teacher, Mrs. Genova, writes that Whitney is a very dedicated student who has made tremendous gains academically this year. At the beginning of the year she was placed in a below level reading group, because her final placement scores from last year as well as her FCAT scores indicated that she needed remediation. Very early on, she showed a very strong work ethic. She enjoys participating in class and asks questions that add to our discussions. After the first nine weeks, Whitney moved up to the on-level reading group. She’s been on the A/B honor roll twice this year for her outstanding work.
But Whitney’s journey was not easy. She came to the United States when she was three years old from Haiti. In February of 2002 her father passed away after being ill for several months and her mother was sent back to Haiti by relatives to recover from the stress caused by the illness and death of her husband. Whitney and her sisters were adamant about staying in the U.S.
Her sister Carine, who was a Senior in High School at the time, made a promise to her sisters to take care of them for as long as it took for their mother to get better. She attended school during the day, and worked at Eckerd’s each night until midnight. After leaving work she would wake up her sisters, who were being watched at a neighbor’s house, and take them home. Each morning she made sure that her sisters arrived to school. For several months, until their mom was able to return, the staff at Stephen Foster and the entire community rallied around the girls to provide for their rent, food, clothing and all expenses for the apartment.
Today, Whitney enjoys completing extra assignments and frequently asks for additional work. Several times per week she checks out books from the classroom library to take home and read. In the Accelerated Reader program she has read and passed tests on 51 books this year. She frequently stays after school to complete extra assignments on the computer based instructional program called Success Maker.
At the beginning of the year her grade level in math in the Success Maker program was early fourth grade. Her current level in math is beginning sixth grade. She participated in Steam Team and Art Club, which helped boost her self-confidence and esteem. Her sister’s love and the support of adults in her life probably have a little something to do with that as well. One thing is for certain, Carine’s work ethic has rubbed off on Whitney and her future looks bright.
Our Facebook Reunion! :) I can't stop smiling!
Speech and Language Pathologist
As the lead therapist and owner of Teach Beyond Speech Therapy Services, LLC., I provide academically relevant speech therapy for children from preschool through adolescence. I have over 15 years of experience in the education field that includes classroom teaching, ESE education, and speech and language therapy services. Teach Beyond Speech Therapy services clients in the Greater Fort Lauderdale Area of Broward County. We are willing to travel and provide in home therapy services for the cities of Davie, Plantation, Fort Lauderdale, Sunrise, Weston, Cooper City, Pembroke Pines, Miramar and Hollywood.
Keywords: FCAT, success, scores, student, feature, gains, reunion