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What does thrive mean to you?

December 05, 2019 Sarah Williamson By Sarah Williamson

According to Meriam Webster, to thrive means to grow vigorously, to flourish, to progress toward a goal despite or even because of circumstance. Throughout the past several weeks we’ve had the opportunity to speak with many of the teachers and students who use Apex Learning digital curriculum throughout their districts. In these conversations we continued to hear how many of the students have overcome challenging circumstances and persevered despite all odds to pursue their goals, and today they are thriving.

We heard a story about one student in Spartanburg County School District One who wanted to get ahead for college because she knew she would not be able to afford all four years. Through sheer determination, she added an entire year of college courses to her schedule during her senior year in high school, enough to fulfill her freshman year of college and enabling her to graduate in just three years.  

We also heard a story about another young man from Chicago Public Schools who had gotten into a fight in school, was badly injured and had to spend time in the hospital. When he finally came back to school, he was extremely motivated to graduate. He spent lunch breaks and study hall taking credit recovery courses, and he had to work right up until the eleventh hour the night before graduation. Administrators kept asking if he would be able to walk in graduation, and when he submitted his final class, the teacher confirmed that he did, indeed, pass his final course, and he could march with his classmates. When he walked across that stage the next day, he was the first person in his family to achieve that goal.

We spoke with an administrator from Plainview Independent School District who likes to describe their school’s alternative education program as the place where the bold and determined students go—students who want to graduate early, have social and emotional issues or anxiety, or students who may have left the district due to a pregnancy. Many of the students who are in the program may be taking the same test for the eighth or ninth time, and they’ve had to overcome an inordinate number of obstacles just to show up in class that day. But they don’t give up, and they are determined to succeed. The odds are stacked against them, yet they have chosen a different path, a path to success.   

We are honored to support these students, teachers and administrators in their quest to drive student achievement, redefining what thrive means to us. To learn more about these stories of achievement, visit:

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