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A reunion 40 years in the making: How a Louisville teacher helped shape the life of a D.C. attorney


Ana Reyes,剩下,拥抱她的一年级老师Pat Harkleroad。在测试Covid-19考试中的负面测试后,现在是一个屡获殊荣的律师在Harkleroad团聚,现在退休并照顾她的丈夫和儿子。这两者在11月13日重聚中翻转了旧照片,并在reunion期间回复了他们的生活时刻。在Covid-19测试中测试负面后,reyes与harkleroad团聚。(照片由jacob perkins)

ByJacob Perkins
肯塔基州老师

Ana Reyes花了几十年,希望与她的一年级老师重新连接,但最近与她的朋友的孩子们遇到过,希望成为现实。

Reyes and her family immigrated to the United States when she was 5 years old. Before that, she spent time in Montevideo, Uruguay, and Barcelona, Spain.

While she doesn’t recall much from her life before her family was in the U.S., she does remember the difficulties of integrating into a new culture without knowing the language.

1979年搬到路易斯维尔后,雷耶斯在Wild Yentry(Jefferson County)开始教育。

“What I remember most was in kindergarten being really confused,” she said. “I remember not knowing how to interact with people and not always knowing what was going on. Instructions would be given, but unless I was watching what other people did, I wouldn’t necessarily know what the instructions meant.”

Pat Harkleroad,Left和Ana Reyes通过相册了解。Harkleroad教授Reyes如何在Wilder小学(Jefferson County)的1年级,雷亚斯在雷亚斯讲话,阅读和写入英语。(照片由jacob perkins)

In the beginning, it was difficult for Reyes to make friends. She recalled a moment in kindergarten when a couple of her classmates were playing with building blocks. Reyes eagerly wanted to join in on the fun, but the other children wouldn’t let her play with them.

“I remember that that was frustrating,” she said. “I went down to sit for story time and I couldn’t understand the story at all. I was frustrated and bored. I looked over at the building of blocks. I quietly got up, I went over to it and pushed it down.”

Reyes still was struggling with the language when she entered 1st grade. Her teacher vowed to help her learn so Reyes could catch up to the other students and came in early before the school day to assist.

“That was life-changing,” Reyes said. “To this day, I don’t know how far behind I would have been if no one had done that.”

By 4th grade, Reyes found herself in the gifted and talented program. She went on to graduate from Atherton High School’s (Jefferson County) International Baccalaureate program and then Transylvania University in 1996. After taking a year off, she attended Harvard Law School and graduated in 2000. Then in 2014, she earned her master’s in international public policy from Johns Hopkins University.

雷耶斯现任国际实践争议实践和威廉姆斯&康纳利LLP的执行委员会成员,这是一家位于华盛顿州的威廉姆斯&康诺特公司,D.C。

摘要hout her career, she has done a considerable amount of pro bono work representing refugee organizations and refugees seeking asylum in the United States. In 2017, she was named the D.C. Women’s Bar Association’s Woman Lawyer of the Year.

With all of her accomplishments, Reyes often wondered whether her career would have been possible if someone had not spent that extra time to help her learn English.

多年来,她努力联系teacher who helped change her life, but couldn’t find her because she couldn’t remember the teacher’s name.

While visiting with some friends recently, Reyes noticed their daughter, who was in 1st grade, reading complete sentences and children’s books. Since Reyes does not have children of her own, this was eye-opening to see how far behind she was during her early years at Wilder.

“I knew the teacher came in early to teach me English and how to read, but I didn’t realize I was so far behind,” she said. “It sort of hit me at that moment.”

雷耶斯知道她需要找到与老师联系的方法。在她在Facebook上发布后,在开始到哪里开始建议,那个参加了与肯塔基教育专员教师准备计划的朋友Jason E.玻璃推荐她与他联系,看看他和肯塔基教育部是否可以帮助。

One email and two days later, Reyes had a name to go with the memories. She would finally be able to thank the teacher who not only helped her learned the language, but also sent her down a lifelong path of volunteer work and helping other immigrants.

“I think it made a big difference in my life in that one of the first interactions I had was with someone who was volunteering and giving their time and absorbing that that is how one should behave,” Reyes said. “It has made a big impact on how I try to help others and how I try to think about the world. It wasn’t just about teaching me English, it was teaching that we should all help each other and do what we can for each other. That was an important lesson, too.”

Pat Harkleroad

Originally from Piney Flats, Tenn., a small community in the eastern part of the state, Pat Harkleroad and her husband, Jack, moved to Louisville after he received a job offer from International Harvester.

A graduate of East Tennessee State University, Harkleroad began her teaching career at Wilder in 1970, following in the footsteps of the many teachers in her family.

Pat Harkleroad,吧,将她的头放在Ana Reyes的肩膀上。经过近40年的时间,这两个人于11月13日结束,所以雷耶斯可以感谢Harkleroad为她的时间和精力教导她如何讲英语,阅读和写作。(照片由Toni Konz Tatman)

“我的整个家庭已经最终成为老师,”她说。“我有一个老师的阿姨,这就是我们所知道的,因为这就是他们所在的。你可以成为一名教师,护士或秘书,这是关于我毕业的。“

Harkleroad回忆起她的教室总是充满活力,充满色彩,所以她可以充分利用她的学生。

“If you could have seen my classroom when I had all these little children in 1st grade,” she said. “My classroom was filled with color and life. I just wanted to fill these children’s minds with as much as I could and have as much fun learning as we could.”

当雷耶斯于1980年进入她的教室时,Harkleroad知道她需要做点什么来帮助她赶上其他学生,但并不是那么开始的地方。

她在Wilder上去了她的同事,他建议从普通课堂上的照片开始,所以雷耶斯可能会更熟悉她周围的学校环境。

“That’s what I did for probably a week or so to help get her acclimated,” Harkleroad said. “I just did a lot of talking with her at first.”

With the approval of Reyes’ mother, Lilliam Decastelli, Harkleroad began meeting with her early for one-on-one lessons.

“她的母亲每天早上带来她,在剩下的孩子来之前,我们在课堂上遇到了,”Harkleroad说。“一旦我教过几句话,我甚至在阅读计划中开始了她。她真的被抓住了,真的很快。她就像一点点海绵。我发布的一切,我会知道的第二天。“

Even though these lessons were outside of the typical workday, Harkleroad said she had no problem coming in early each day to assist Reyes.

Ana Reyes在11月13日重聚期间读了一封信Pat Harkleroad。雷耶斯对Harkleroad的时间和努力具有巨大的感激之情,并且她将肯塔基州的公共教育系统作为整体,在她今天的位置。(照片由Toni Konz Tatman)

“That was my job to do that,” she said. “I felt responsible for taking her into my room and helping her as much as I could and that’s the reason I tutored her. I would have done anybody that way.”

Harkleroad suffered a heart attack in 1998 and though she was not ready to leave the classroom, she decided to retire. However, after regaining her health, she returned to Wilder on a part-time basis to help teach music, remedial reading and assist the school’s gifted and talented program until 2005.

After serving the students of Wilder for 35 years, she shifted her focus to the students at St. Mary’s Center, a nondenominational, nonprofit agency serving more than 150 adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities in the Louisville area.

This project was especially important to Harkleroad because her son, Brad, has Down syndrome and takes classes at the center.

“I’ve had a variety of things that I have gotten to do during my time in teaching and I really have enjoyed it tremendously,” she said. “I continue to teach. It’s just in my blood and I’ll probably do that until the day I die.”

Since fully retiring, Harkleroad has been primarily focused on her family, not realizing that all this time Reyes has been carrying her generosity alongside her.

When she found out Reyes had been searching for her, she said she “was absolutely floored.”

“It was such an honor for her to even think of me,” Harkleroad said. “I’ve just been overwhelmed with the idea that she could remember me and think that I was a part of her education career. It just feels so good.”

一旦雷耶斯有了Harkleroad的名字,她预订了一架航班回到路易斯维尔拜访她的母亲。她采取了Covid-19考试,以确保她对病毒和11月13日是负面的,之后,在掩盖指导方针,Reyes和Harkleroad能够拥有四十年来制作的团聚。

团圆

Around 9 a.m. ET, Reyes made her way up the driveway of Harkleroad’s home in Louisville. Admittedly nervous, she rang the doorbell and was welcomed with a warm embrace.

团聚开始用糕点,咖啡和橙汁。在那之后,雷耶斯和哈林克湾坐在沙发上终于追赶了这一次。

Ana Reyes., left, and Pat Harkleroad look through the book “One Girl” by Andrea Beaty. The book resonated deeply with Reyes, as she said the most important refugee case she has handled in her career had to do with a group of girls who were kidnapped and persecuted for trying to learn. (Photo by Jacob Perkins)

Reyes’ legs were shaking due to nerves as she read aloud the email she sent to Glass.

“My family moved to the U.S. when I was about 5 years old,” she read. “When I started elementary school, I couldn’t speak a word of English. I recall that my 1st-grade teacher at Wilder Elementary School in Louisville came to school early regularly, on her own time, to help me get caught up on learning to speak, read and write English.”

Holding back tears, Reyes continued, “I would very much love to say thank you, and that my life very likely wouldn’t have been possible without you.”

放心,哈克勒罗在雷耶斯的腿上放在雷耶斯的腿上,告诉她,她不需要感谢她的任何事情。

“You know, you do what you need to do,” said Harkleroad. “When you came to school, we knew we had a job to do and we were going to do it.”

The two talked about their lives since the 1980-1981 school year. Reyes, now an award-winning attorney and Harkleroad, now retired and taking care of her husband and son, flipped through old photos and reminisced on moments from their lives.

Harkleroad甚至有雷耶斯的礼物,包括Andrea Beaty的“一个女孩”书。在这本书中,Beaty注意到数百万个年轻女孩每年都被拒绝教育。这本书中的女孩被读到了一个新世界,并激发了与世界上其他女孩分享她的故事。

“When I read the whole thing, knowing about all that you have accomplished, this was the perfect book,” Harkleroad said to Reyes. “It couldn’t be any better.”

这本书与雷耶斯深深地谐波,因为她说,她在她的职业生涯中处理的最重要的难民案件与一群被绑架并迫害试图学习的女孩有关。

“They were able to escape,” she said. “We were able to get them visas to come into the United States and we were able to get each of them asylum. Now they have graduated from high school, they’re in college and they’re doing great.”

在承诺保持联系后,重聚结束了另一个拥抱。经过40年,雷耶斯终于能够感谢老师,让她确保她没有陷入裂缝。

尽管雷耶斯对Harkleroad的时间和努力感到非常感谢,但她认为肯塔基州的公共教育系统作为一个整体,因为她今天在哪里。

“Kentucky public school teachers have definitely shaped my life and shaped my ability to have the career I have,” she said. “I just don’t think it could have started off any better than the lessons and compassion that Mrs. Harkleroad gave.”

This story first appeared in肯塔基州老师是肯塔基教育部的出版物。


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