NEW YORK, NY / ACCESSWIRE / July 3, 2020 / One can never underestimate the influence of a teacher on a child growing up. In some cases, teachers “make or break” the future of their students. This was definitely the case for Edward DeShazer.
Edward is the son of Pastor James DeShazer, founder of Greater Holy Temple Christian Academy (GHTCA). GHTCA is a private K-8 school that serves a 98% economically-disadvantaged population. The school was the vision of the late Elder Joe R. DeShazer, who was Edward’s uncle and brought to life by Pastor DeShazer in 2003. The humble institution started out with just 57 students. Today, the school educates more than 600 students every year.
Edward had been by his father’s side at the school since 2006. He had started out as a gym teacher and eventually transitioned to handling seventh grade. A teacher of this particular class was struggling to reach out to the students, so Edward took over. Eventually, he was able to turn the class around by focusing on building meaningful relationships with the students and genuinely connecting with them. From there, Edward transitioned into contributing to the school’s technology program, and then he worked at admissions and events coordinating, subsequently. In 2013, Pastor DeShazer had a stroke, and Edward was named the Assistant Executive Director. Two years later, he became the Executive Director of GHTCA. Pastor DeShazer was the heartbeat of the school until his recent passing last June 6, 2020.
Edward is determined to fulfill the vision and mission of his father and his uncle by continuing to help better the lives of Milwaukee’s children. Ever since he became the Executive Director for GHTCA, its State Report Card score has seen an increase by over 16% and the institution is now considered one of the higher-performing schools in Milwaukee.
However, Edward wasn’t always this way. In his youth, he was suspended from school over 30 times-the first time being in third grade for bringing bullets to school. No, he didn’t own a gun, but at the time, his dad had an army surplus store, and Edward had brought the bullets to show them off. “If that happened today, I would’ve been shut out of our school system,” Edward shares. He was expelled from middle school two days before graduation and was expelled again from high school within the first month of his freshman year. Fortunately, he was given another chance to return for his sophomore year, and from then on, he was never suspended again. Edward later graduated on the honor roll and got himself an athletic and academic scholarship to St. Cloud State.
Edward recalls, “I was the student that every teacher dreaded seeing on their classroom roster. I was very smart, but my behaviors and attitudes were very challenging. I know and remember how good teachers made me feel and showed me they cared. It didn’t matter how good of a teacher they were; what mattered was that they truly showed me they cared.”
Today, Edward advocates for techniques in the classroom that incorporate building relationships with students. He has a passion for helping the youth and finding ways to better the quality of their education, which is rooted in his own experience of not being given up on by his teachers and mentors.
SOURCE: Authority Titans
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