The challenges of working in an urban school are not for every teacher. Some get burnt out fast. Some lose sight of why they started teaching in the first place. Some find their calling in other neighborhoods…with other kids. But not Salome Thomas-El. A Teacher at Roberts Vaux Middle School in Philadelphia’s inner city, he chose to stay. Gripping, poignant, and homest, this is his blistering real-life tale of mentoring and making a difference—and how the reformation of America’s educational system can start with just one school.
Praise for I Choose To Stay
“An intensely moving story of loyalty and courage and a deeply pewrsonal tribute to the great potential of our inner-city kids, so frequently dismissed and denigrated by American society. The redemptive power of a teacher’s love shines through these pages with prophetic grace. I am grateful to the author for the lesson of essential decency he teaches us” –Jonathan Kozol
“This book is about courage. It is a story about determination, about compassion, love and the ultimate fight. This is the fight against the odds, against the ‘system’ and years of cultural, social and economic factors that would have allowed this group of inner-city kids to become nothing more than a set of statistics. But Salome Thomas-El would not let that happen. He would not give up. He saw the potential in them and he fought for them. he used a board game as a weapon in this figth.” –From the forward by Arnold Schwarzenegger
“A powerful story about what an inspirational teacher can do to open new horizons for economically disadvantaged young people” –William H. Gray, III, President, United Negro College Fund
“This book shows how one dedicated educator who believes in th potential of all our kids can make a huge difference and how, under teh proper circumstances, urban education can work.” –Edward G. Rendell, former mayor of Philadelphia, Chairman of the Democratic National Convention
“An eloquent example of how commitment and innovation can better the lives of inner-city children.” —Kirkus Reviews
Salome Thomas-El, Cecil Murphey