As Stephie and I returned home from the Artful Night Humanex fundraiser, we chatted about Humanex and what it means to our family.
Let me just say that it’s no exaggeration saying that the school is a life saver. The care (and patience) shown each day by the staff is exemplary. Bob, Holly, Kati, Tom and the rest, headed by Dan and supported by the ever-smiling Sue, show that it is possible to “herd cats”, and teach them something while they do it. Meow.
Watching our son struggle in a system that rejected him out-of-hand, telling him he was bad, lazy, stupid and all manner of crushing adjectives was hurtful to say the least. After meeting the school Psychologist for the umpteenth time and been given a list of twenty two “punishments” we were supposed to administer, that included: removing everything from his bedroom except his bare mattress on the floor and making him earn back everything from sheets and a pillow to certain clothes, all over a period of four weeks–making him stand and read a statement before the class each morning to “apologize for being a bad person”; the list goes on…and on…It was time to leave. I remember the day we walked into Humanex Academy. Walking in there was an instant and even palpable feeling of kindness and understanding. The “No-Kill Shelter” for kids. If Mother Teresa had a teaching degree she’d have worked there…(maybe not PE though…just sayin”…). Humanex doesn’t just teach Alex academically, it teaches him about life-and how to deal with it. It prods and protects kicks and coddles. It has humanity. It also does something else remarkable, it teaches us.
There are days when it’s not just Alex who appears to be without sails and feeling rudderless on the vastness of life’s ocean, blown and tugged at by forces that seem to be totally outside of our control. When this happens Dan and Tom have taken time to give deeply from their experience and knowledge, often shedding much needed light on the workings of Alex and others. Many of the teachers have also helped with their understanding of this most complex of beings; the teenager. We can heap praise on all the staff until the cows come home; but we feel we must reach out to you and let you know how much your work and vision mean to us.
You deserve a medal.
Vous méritez une médaille, Te mereces una medalla, Sie verdienen eine Medaille, Вы заслужили медаль, Du förtjänar en medalj.
Without you……………………………………zip, zilch, nada.
May your life be full of “Get out of Jail Free” cards…and puppy’s…and double-yolked eggs, and parking meters with time left on them from the people before you.
Grant, Stephanie and Alex Leighton.
P.S. A friend once asked Alex why he goes to a private school, I think he nailed it: “When I left DPS I was broken-Humanex fixed me”.