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Alex’s Story – The Video


This is the story of a student who overcomes drugs and the death of a parent with the help of a faithful principal. You will be reminded of how educators have the ability to shape students’ lives. From the Eye on Education Tale’s from a Teacher’s Heart movie series.

If you want to read the full text,

Alex had been kicked out after only his first year in high school. He had attended class for only 21 days that year. Worse, he had been arrested five times for dealing drugs. At the beginning of his tenth-grade year, Alex asked to be admitted to a new school.

The principal of the new school met with Alex to determine whether or not to admit him. He looked over his academic record. It showed he had received excellent grades during his first nine years of school. But something had happened to change all that during ninth grade. The principal asked him to explain what had happened.

“My father died last year,” Alex said, “and I needed to pay for the funeral. So I started dealing drugs. It was good money, so I kept on doing it. I make more money now dealing drugs than going to school. But I also know what my life expectancy will be.

The principal knew the same statistic. Three years.

The principal asked, “What is it that you want? What is it that you need?”

Alex replied, “I don’t want to be a statistic. I don’t want to die in three years. I want to go back to high school.”

The principal could see that Alex was still a bright kid, who wanted to get past dealing drugs. He admitted him to the school.

Alex studied hard and maintained a B average. He impressed everyone in the school with his intelligence, work ethic, and personal charm. He graduated on time and was accepted to a local college on full scholarship. He got a summer job with a local business to help pay for his college expenses.

But Alex’s past wouldn’t let him go. Frustrated, he told the principal, “Thank you for everything you’ve done for me, but I can’t go to college here. If I stay, I’m afraid I’ll get back into trouble. I need a fresh start.”

The principal knew the dean of another college in a nearby state. He told her about Alex’s history, but he also told about his intelligence, work ethic, and successful efforts to change his life so far. The dean agreed to interview him. Alex visited the school and had a successful interview. He started college the following fall.

Midway through the fall semester, the principal received a phone call from the dean.

“I need to talk with you about Alex,” the Dean said. The principal was worried. Had Alex’s past caught up with him again?

“Alex has just been elected the freshman representative to the student government,” said the dean. His grades are outstanding. I want to know if you have any more Alex’s at your school. We want you to send them here.”

The principal smiled and breathed a sigh of relief. He called Alex to congratulate him””and also to find out how to meet the dean’s request.

“How can we clone you, Alex?” he asked. “What did we do that was right?”

“I’ll be happy to tell you,” Alex said, “but on one condition.” He laughed. “Visit me here and treat me to dinner at the nicest restaurant in town.”

The next weekend, the principal drove out to the college and took Alex out to dinner at the nicest restaurant in town. Then Alex gave him the secret of his success. Of their success.

He said, “You were the first person who ever asked me what I needed instead of telling me what I needed to do.”

Alex graduated from college and was hired by a major engineering firm in Chicago. Due to his intelligence, work ethic, and personal charm, he was soon promoted. And promoted again. His annual salary was now higher than the principal’s…for the last several years combined!

Several years later, the principal was in Chicago and decided to look Alex up and give him a call. Alex was happy to hear from the principal and once again thanked him for helping him get through his troubled years.

“Let’s get together while you’re here”, he suggested. “Sure,” the principal replied. “But on one condition. You treat me to dinner at the nicest restaurant in town.”

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