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Monday, February 17, 2020
Colleen is a young woman on the cusp of realizing her dreams. She has just become an elementary school teacher and even though it is 1969 and America is deep in the Vietnam War, Colleen continues to envision a world where everyone is equal. When her husband is transferred to become a drill sergeant in Louisiana, Colleen quickly learns the deep South is nothing like New Jersey. She must disturbingly fight for the very basic freedoms and assistance all students deserve. Narrated alternately by Colleen; Frank - an outstanding local black high school student and Evelyn - an accomplished teacher and advocate who has become Colleen’s mentor. These different perspectives reflect the many ways that segregation, separate but equal and choice schools affected the painstakingly slow changes mandated in the United States with Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. A fictionalized account of the author’s own young life experiences, this dynamic teacher went on to become an educational advocate for the next forty years. Bravo, Eileen Harrison Sanchez, thank you for sharing your story; a wonderful, well-written historic reminder to keep moving forward, always striving to do even better for our children.