Enriching a child’s knowledge and understanding, serving as a guide in learning new things in school, and preparing children for their future career are just some of the things you can expect from a teacher.
Deputy Headteacher Ruth Clarkson of of Lansbury Bridge School & Sports College in St. Helens, England did all those things – and much more.
When the 11-year old student Ben Twist failed his SATs, you might expect him to feel down, as any other child would if they failed an exam. But Mrs. Clarkson made sure that didn’t happen.
Ben was diagnosed with autism when he was just five. But his condition was not a hindrance for him – as a matter of fact, he was the only student in their school who attempted to take the SATs that year.
Unfortunately, Ben didn’t pass the test, and when the results came in, Mrs. Clarkson penned a letter for Ben that moved his mother, Gail, to tears.
Gail was extremely touched by the letter that she posted it on her twitter account:
Among the beautiful words Mrs. Clarkson wrote were: “These tests only measure a little bit of you and your abilities.” The teacher also listed all of Ben’s best abilities.
Mrs. Clarkson’s act of kindness spread so quickly that some local news stations even featured the heartwarming story. When Liverpool Echo interviewed Gail, she said: “Ben is sensitive and he does worry about things, and I wish more schools did things like this.”
She even said that Ben has really improved since they moved him to the Lansbury Bridge School & Sports College from a mainstream school. He now looked forward to going to school and has made friends.
And, it seems that writing touching letters to students is something that Mrs. Clarkson is used to doing. According to Headteacher Jane Grecic, she has also written a similar letter to another student a year before Ben’s story became viral.
Gail agreed with the things Mrs. Clarkson said about Ben in her letter, saying:
“He is all of the things they wrote about him – he is an amazing person. I think their words will stay with him if we keep reminding him what they said about him. When I told him he said: ‘Wow, do they really think all those things about me?’ It’s just a beautiful thing to do.”
As per Gail, Ben couldn’t believe that they really thought that about him and said it was awesome:
Instead of focusing on all the things that went wrong, Mrs. Clarkson chose to look at all the good things Ben did. And, as a result, she completely turned what could have been a bad news into a good news.
Maybe some of us can even learn a thing or two from Mrs. Clarkson’s words and remember them whenever we experience failures. We should keep in mind that these tests only measure a little bit of us and our abilities.
We shouldn’t let our failures define us – rather, we must look at the things that make us beautiful and things that make us special.