Lucy is 18 years old and practically living on her own. When Lucy turned 17, she made a decision to leave her parent’s home and never look back. Lucy’s home life was not an easy one. It would be better described as unstable and rocky. While living at home, her attendance was very poor and her behavior at school would often reflect that. She was often truant and missed many days of school. Because of this, Lucy was sent to court to speak with the DA. Lucky for her, they saw through the tough exterior and decided to give Lucy a chance.
This year, Lucy has been staying with a good friend. In the beginning of the year, Lucy was doing very well. She was attending all her classes, making good grades and looking forward to her future. Lucy has always wanted to join the Army, and as soon as she turned eighteen, she signed with them. Her goal was to graduate with her class and then go see the world.
One day, something happened with Lucy’s ride to school. The friend Lucy had been staying with lived across town and would always drop her off on her way to work. For some reason her friend was no longer able to do this and so Lucy began missing school. Lucy’s absences began to accumulate, again putting her in danger of losing her credits and having to go back to court. She did not want to transfer to another school because she was doing so well at ours and knew how close she was to graduating. Also, she knew she needed the most stable and structured environment in order to do well, and that was here at our school. Lucy understood she was losing precious time.
So, one day Lucy came to school and met with CIS and the support counselor. We discussed her options and services available. There was no one else for Lucy to stay with in our District and she did not want to stay in the local shelter. However, thanks to the assistance of District Transportation, there was a solution, although not the easiest one.
It was decided that Lucy would catch a metro near her friend’s house early in the morning, get on a connecting bus that would take her into Clear Lake, get off at the Park and Ride, catch a special CCISD bus that would bring her close to the school where she would then have to walk the rest of the way.
Even though this was a solution, she still would miss several classes due to timing. Because of this, her morning classes would now be considered “independent study” where she would work with her teachers and counselors to make sure all work was made up or turned in. The school simply wanted to give Lucy a chance to succeed. As stated before, Lucy did not have the traditional teenage life as many of her peers had, but her perseverance to do well and finish school in the face of so many obstacles was simply remarkable. There are still several months of school left, and maybe a few more future “bumps in the road” for Lucy, but I believe her determination to graduate will carry her through.