Why We Send Our Kids to the Poorest Public School
And then I spent a lot of time repenting. I could change my situation if I wanted to. Most of the other families couldn't. I asked people at our church and in other cities what we should do. Almost everyone said, "Leave." "Your children will suffer," they added. And then someone gave me an essay by John Perkins, the wonderful Christian community developer, and he said, "Stay."
God Was Already Present
So we stayed. We met the Christian teachers at the school. One of my son's "brown" classmates asked him if he would pray for his dad, and they began praying and playing together, and eight years later remain best friends. We met the staff of a ministry providing tutoring and mentors for these kids. God showed us that he had been there long before we arrived.
But I still wept and worried and wondered what I could do. Almost simultaneously I had two pastors, including my husband, say, "Trust God with your children." I was mad. I didn't want to trust God. I just wanted things to change.
So I partnered with another mom in the neighborhood. We spoke at school board meetings. We pushed to hire a new principal and a full-time ESL coordinator. We figured out a way to raise $3,000 for the PTO through bake sales, grantwriting, local business donations, and the best darn bingo night you've ever seen.
Just as I was getting a handle on the school setting, beginning to trust and to join what was being done to fight the achievement gap, God opened my eyes to something called the opportunity gap.