EZEKIAL CHEATHAM

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I’m in the 9th grade at Bright Futures Academy in Atlanta, GA. This is my first year attending. I went to Kindergarten at a school near here. I went there until 4th grade, then I went to Kipp Vision Middle School. Then I went to Kipp Atlanta Collegiate High School before I went to Bright Futures.

The first thing I noticed was Kipp was so much bigger than Bright Futures. It was kind of weird. There were only seven people in my class and it was like 40 plus at one of my classes at Kipp. It was just a total game changer.

I changed schools because there was an incident that happened. I didn’t want to do this the whole year, and keep going through this again, so they thought it was better for my safety if I just left. So, I did.

I like how the teachers at Bright Futures help everyone. With small classes, my teacher can go to each student at a time. That is better for everyone. It helps more people that way. The teachers don’t have to constantly ask the students that are doing better to help the ones that are not. The teacher can get to everyone.

I think the teachers are cool here. That’s another difference. The teachers are more real. They will tell you, “Look Ezekial, we want you to be successful. You need to stop playing. You need to stop doing this at night. You need to get on your grind, because you’re in high school now. You gotta stop playing. This is not middle school anymore, so you gotta keep going.” There are some smart teachers here, because they graduated from college, all of them did this and that, but that doesn’t make them smart, they’re wise also. They give good advice and help you. Okay, you do this and that, but I’m going to teach you how to do this and that, instead of just telling you how to get there.

I just came from my math class, and my teacher said, “Ezekial, I’m not going to tell you the answer, I’m going to teach you how to get there.” He was like, “I’m going to teach you how to figure out how to get this binomial and how to figure out these trinomials. I’m not going to tell you the answer, because that’s not doing nothing. You need to know how to do all of them.”

My brother also attends Bright Futures. He’s in the 11th grade. It’s important that my family had options because public school is not for everyone. It was more convenient for me to attend this school because I live nearby. My mom works at the building next door, so it was easier for her to get us here. If I was at public school, it would be more difficult because of the location and just size. We don’t have to wait in the drop-off line with 30 cars in front of us.

Families should have choices because there is opportunity. One school isn’t for everyone, but if you’re forced to go to a certain school, you may not get pushed and challenged. Bright Futures, you’ll be able to get one-on-one time, benefits, go on trips, and there’s religion. If your family is big on religion, you’ll get access to what you believe in. You can learn if you believe in that same thing. At the end of the day, it’s your life, your choice. If you don’t have the opportunity, what’s the point? You’re just living your life doing what other people want you to do. So, when you grow up, you’ll have to ask other people for help, you’re going to have to ask other people what to do when you should know yourself.

BECOME A VOICE FOR CHOICE
BECOME A VOICE FOR CHOICE