Students for a Smarter Planet ..leaders with conscience
February, 29th 2012

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wendy.murphy in

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My own personal experiences and education were different before I came to P-TECH. How, you ask? Well I’m going to tell you.

I had or still have many flaws in my education, and many of those flaws come from the schools I recently attended. None of my former schools focused on the weaknesses of the students like P-TECH does. For example in my old middle school, I was struggling a lot with math. It was impossible for me to get anything done. I was constantly requesting help, but I never got the right help. It was almost like nobody cared about my problems in school. For English Language Arts , my writing was okay, but my reading was not up to the right standard. I requested tutoring sessions that were promised but never fulfilled. I was an average student, I never took tests seriously, and I thought school was a joke. But P-TECH changed all. At P-TECH, I’m getting help with my math, my ELA, and with my professional attitude towards school and the real world.

I’d hoped P-TECH would change my horrible habits in math. That’s exactly what it did, but not immediately. Nothing really changed for me until they introduced MathXL to us and began after-school programs. Math started getting easier, and I was getting the correct help I needed. My math became more accurate, and I became one of the best in my math class. I felt accomplished when I looked at my math grades, and thought I didn’t have to practice anymore. But I was wrong.

I have a ways to go before I can call myself a good mathematician. I didn’t do too well on the math Regents – not because I didn’t understand the problems, but because of the poor study habits I’d carried over my former schools. But even after the Regents, I am still getting great help. I’m even in a class with kids that have some of the same issues and need the same kind of help. I am very impressed with P-TECH, and I really appreciate the math help that I am receiving.

My ELA skills are not spectacular either. I am not very detail oriented, but P-TECH changed that about me too. I used to be a mediocre writer and reader. I hated reading, and I thought writing was boring. For the first week of P-TECH, nothing was going well for me until my first ELA teacher Ms. Kym took the time to understand me and help me improve myself in writing and reading. When I entered P-TECH, I had a seventh-grade reading level. I don’t know my current reading level, but I know it far exceeds seventh grade. I have been making major improvements in my learning and I am even studying more. Because of P-TECH, I have great study habits and I’m a really good writer. To top it off, I got an 88 on the ELA Regents. I wouldn’t have gotten such a good grade if I had studied at any other school. But P-TECH made it happen. I greatly appreciate being accepted into P-TECH and being given another chance to improve myself. I am sure that with the guidance of P-TECH, I will achieve my life goals and become a better person than what I am today.

I was never really a good student to begin with, and I thought I never would be. I felt that school was hopeless and a waste of time. But when I arrived at P-TECH and found out about the whole early college program, I felt that I could do better that I could actually find a purpose for going to school. I am a much better person and student than I was before I came to school here. P-TECH is an excellent school, and I highly recommend it. If you want get rid of bad habits and develop better habits, then P-TECH is the school for you. Take it from me. I was a horrible student until I came to P-Tech, and I hope it will change everybody else as much as it did me.

Tahmel Anderson is a ninth grader at New York’s Pathways in Technology Early College High School (P-TECH).

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