The Importance of Education

The Importance of Education

Grace had never received even one “A” in school.

When the 13-year-old girl arrived at Mercy Home, catching up in class was the furthest thing from her mind. She had long ago lost hope that she would ever be a good student. And why bother at this point? She kept getting promoted to the next grade even though she only received a grade besides “F” in subjects like physical education and art—and even then she was barely passing.

“I was never good in school,” she explained. “I didn’t see the point of doing homework or studying.”

She had been that way her whole life because no one had ever expected more of her.

Before Mercy Home, I never thought I would get a C in school, much less an A. I actually feel like I can succeed now.

She had been that way her whole life because no one had ever expected more of her.

Her mother had been taken away when she was only five years old. She had been sent to live with her aunt, who didn’t want Grace in the first place. Her aunt didn’t make much money and didn’t want to spend what little extra she did have at the time on Grace. She wanted to spend it on her own two children, Grace’s cousins.

And things weren’t any better at school. Her teachers couldn’t keep control over their classrooms, and the same troublemakers learned that they could disrupt class year after year. Eventually, Grace fell in with the “troublemakers”—and would stay out with them long into the evening, just so she wouldn’t have to go home.

“Things were so bad at home that I did anything to avoid going back there,” she said. “And I thought they were my friends. I thought they cared about me.”

Grace lived like this for almost a decade, never realizing she had deserved more love than what her family showed her.

But then, for the first time at 13, she was told she would have to be held back a grade. She probably would have dropped out—she had gotten to where she hardly bothered to go to school anyway.

But the teacher who told Grace she would have to repeat seventh grade said something to her she would never forget. She told Grace that she noticed she was actually really good in science.

Grace was amazed—no one had told her she seemed good at anything in school. The teacher went on to tell her that she could make up a few detention hours by sorting lab specimens. Grace realized she enjoyed the work a lot, and developed a rapport with the teacher—eventually telling her teacher about her troubles at home.

“It was a relief to finally tell someone about what was going on,” she said. “And my teacher actually seemed to care about my problems.”

The teacher knew from her parish about Mercy Home, and told Grace that it would be a stable place away from her difficult life with her aunt. It would also be a place where she could get away from her bad social habits.

Grace was very interested—and contacted our admissions department.

Since coming to Mercy Home, Grace has finally seen the importance of education. Now, not only does she have a safe place to live away from the strife with her aunt, she is finally bringing home report cards completely full of passing grades.

And, this semester, she finally brought home her first A: biology.

“Before Mercy Home, I never thought I would get a C in school, much less an A,” she said. “I actually feel like I can succeed now.”

Thank you for making possible wonderful transformations for children like Grace.

Disclaimer: Because we care deeply about protecting our children’s privacy, the names and certain identifying details in this story have been changed.

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