This blog post is a part of a series on the parents and grandparents that make up Nashville Rise’s first cohort of Parent Advocacy Leaders. Learn how this parent’s various life experiences have fueled her passion for high-quality education and why she is a part of Nashville Rise.
My Story: Victoria Gordon
My name is Victoria Gordon, and I am a single mother of 3 beautiful children – 1 who graduated from East Nashville Magnet this past school year, a 10th grader at LaVergne High School and a 3rd grader at Nashville Classical Charter School. I have always been active at my children’s schools, but it wasn’t until I had my youngest son that my job title would go from career woman to At-Home Mom/Personal One-on-one Supporter. When my youngest son, Malik entered the school system, I became just that. I quit my job and became his full time support system.
Early on I knew that Malik would require more of my time because his learning style was very unique. Around the time Malik entered into the school system, he was diagnosed with ADHD and Autism. During his first year in school, we obtained an Individualized Education Plan, but even after this plan was created, Malik was failing, and I could not let this continue. What parent doesn’t want their child to learn and feel wanted?
It was at that moment I realized that my son’s zoned school was not the best fit for him. I knew that as Malik’s mother, I had to be his education advocate so, I started my search for a great school that would serve my son’s needs. Although I had two older children that were enrolled in school, I had no clue that I had different school options. I had heard about public charter schools, and at first, I was totally skeptical and against them. Then I came across Nashville Classical Charter School. At this school, my child was not just a number, dollar or a seat, he was a person with needs. It was so nice to know that there was a group of people out there that cared about my son as much as I did. I’m happy to report that Malik is doing very well, he has done things that doctors and former teachers said he would never do.
My passion, drive and fire for high-quality education landed me an opportunity to meet a member of Nashville Rise. I am so honored to be apart of an organization that is informing parents on high-quality educational options, empowering parents (like me) through parent trainings, engaging parents in community and school activities and teaching us that our choice, voice and opinions matter. I am more than happy that my past educational struggles led me to be involved in something as powerful as Nashville Rise. I don’t just advocate for my children, but for all children to obtain the best quality education regardless of zip code.
Lastly, I will leave you with this thought and question: Should the zip code where a family lives determine their children’s educational opportunities? Because as of now, it can.
Thank you and hopefully you will join me in educating parents on the importance of quality education for all children in Tennessee.
Do you want to learn more about Nashville Rise parents? If so, check out this blog post: My Story: Quasia Walker.