My name is Sophia Rodriguez, and I am the American dream.
The daughter of a migrant worker, my parents came to Mercer County in the ‘50s so they could build a better life for me and my three siblings. I vividly remember that day my mother received her GED—I was in the eighth grade and my father, who didn’t have the opportunity to finish school, reminded us that education was the key to a better future.
Now I’m a classroom teacher. For more than two decades I have dedicated my life to education, and to creating opportunities for my students so they can help strengthen their own families and communities.
But I can’t do it alone.
Every year I return to the classroom, I see the changes. There’s no funding for field trips or money to buy new books. We’ve scaled back on staff and services. Students are clamoring to compete in a global society, but we can’t improve out-of-date technology or replace antiquated computers. For my students, the American dream is becoming more and more out-of-reach. And that’s simply not fair.
That’s why in November, I’m urging my friends, family and neighbors to vote NO on Issue 2. We cannot afford to let our kids fall through the cracks. The American Dream should belong to them, too.
—Sophia Rodriguez, high school Spanish teacher, Coldwater, Ohio