The world isn’t what we hope for; every day challenges demand we change our course to move towards our goals. Some of us have more access to paths that pave our possibilities; others struggle with many more obstacles before opportunities open, often not of their choosing– rather the road that life reveals. Teachers and many others see these situations and work to level the mountains of inequity, encouraging strategies, education, and programs for all students to find a focus that may lift them up towards success. Kim Douillard explains this much better in an analogy based on her walks on the beach:
Add the equity piece, the fact that some people have tremendous access and opportunity–often based on financial status and skin color–and the dilemma goes from a stack of small stones to an enormous cliff that crumbles and slips at unexpected moments.
Those cliffs keep me up at night, my efforts dwarfed by their magnitude, overwhelming me with the impossibility of the lift. I find myself drawn to the pebbles. They fit perfectly in my hand as I rub my fingers over their surface, smoothing and soothing as I follow the path nature left before me. I pick one up, adding it my carefully balanced stack, wondering how many I can carry before they topple.
We stack pebbles beneath the cliff of inequity; we worry: “Will this be enough?”
Kim reminded me of a legend that gives me hope, that how we care and encourage, how we support the programs and policies– the pebble upon pebble bridges to lift others — will be helpful. That though we are as small as sparrows, our support is a step forward. It’s an old legend– perhaps you know it:
Thanks, Kim, for rekindling hope.
Go forth and do what you can.
Photo by Sheri
Legend remixed by Sheri in Pixabay CC0 image.