As a current student of South Shore High’s School of Leadership, I have been impacted greatly by the board’s decision to not allow us into the “new” South Shore school.

I’m not going to act like we don’t know why. It is said to us every day that we aren’t allowed to go to the new school because we aren’t good enough, or we don’t deserve it. Well, I think we do deserve to go to the newly built school. For one, it’s in our community and it’s convenient to us. Most of the students have lived in the South Shore area for all of their lives, so equal opportunity should be given to us to prove everybody wrong.

Quite frankly, not all of us are ill-mannered and destructive. Nor are we all gang-affiliated and set bad examples for others. That is just the image that others outside of our community have of us. Every other child in my community has a lot of personal issues going on, most of which comes from people telling us we aren’t good enough. Everywhere we turn, someone is looking down on us or telling us what we’ll never be or what we’ll never amount to. That’s because we are never given a chance to prove nay-sayers wrong. Never judge a book by its cover. As far as our test scores and reading levels being below [grade] level—that’s because no one wants to help us. They have already been brainwashed to believe we can’t learn or are too ignorant to even take the time out to try. If you actually sat down and talked to us, you’d actually know that we aren’t what everyone makes us out to be.

I’m personally devastated that we won’t be able to attend the new school. It just adds more to the overwhelming pile of nay-sayers saying we aren’t good enough. When will we ever be good enough? When will we ever deserve anything? When will anyone ever help us? Maybe they’ll decide when it’s too late, or maybe when our future has already been mapped out for us to fail. With everything going on in our environment, we still come to school every day and are prepared for our short and very dim, expected-to-be unsuccessful journeys. And once again, still we stand, mentally tarnished and physically worn out.

If anybody deserves anything new in our community, and possibly a new beginning to a bright future, it’s the students of the current South Shore School of Leadership, School of Technology, School of Entrepreneurship, and School of the Arts. Show us some students who have been through more than us, are still standing, and far more deserving. Then, and only then, will we give up believing and striving for what rightfully belongs to us.

Makyla Bell
South Shore High School of Leadership

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