Success Stories


Ezra, who was adopted last year, was nominated by his teacher and won an award at his school for Turnaround Student of the Year. Below was his nomination:

“I would like to nominate Ezra as our Turnaround Student.

When Ezra walked into my first grade class his last name was —. His eyes drew you into his world and made you want to get to know what was so special about this unique child. As I learned about his troubled past and unstable life, I was amazed that his anger, disregard for adults, and lack of caring for his peers was not as evident as his paperwork stated.

As the year continued on, there was talk of Ezra’s last name being changed to —. Jarod and Cassie adopted Ezra and his brother. The family bond was instant! The first-time parents were overjoyed, overwhelmed, and a bit dazed. I remember Cassie coming in for one of our numerous conferences and she looked at me and said, “I haven’t gotten my nails or hair done in a while.” I laughed and said, “You really are a mom!”

Our year is coming to an end and Ezra will be moving on to second grade. His anger has turned into peacefulness. His disregard for adults has turned into respect and his lack of caring for his peers has turned into him being one of the most likable, caring young men that any one of his classmates would be proud to call their friend.

His goal is to be a Cleveland Brown football player, however with is superior effort, perseverance, and commitment in turning his life around in such a positive direction, I believe he will be a motivational speaker for students that need to hear there is always hope, dreams, and people out there that really care. Ezra is a name that we will hear in the future, not only on the football field but as a role model for young people.