For her contribution to our series of guest posts, I asked Christine Watson, who owns, directs, and teaches at Be the Change Academy in Round Rock, to share the story behind her school's intriguing name.
Be the change you wish
to see in the world.
—attributed to Mohandas Gandhi
This quote has always been a favorite of mine because of its inspirational and empowering message. It has fostered my belief that if I want to see something happen in this world, I need to start with myself.
As a public school teacher and administrator, I wanted to do more and make real changes to benefit all students. Unfortunately, the culture and bureaucracy surrounding public education hindered my transformative ambitions. I became frustrated with the limitations of public schools.
While attending a workshop on business and communication, I was assigned the task of creating an advertisement for something. I began writing an ad for my imaginary, ideal school, and the name “Be the Change Academy” echoed in my mind. A young man also attending the workshop loved the name I chose for my school. He informed me that he and his wife homeschooled their children and strongly supported alternative education. This gave me the encouragement and inspiration I needed to begin my journey to open a school that would truly reflect my core beliefs about children and the learning process.
Here at Be the Change Academy we understand that every individual has an inner genius and the potential to fulfill his or her personal mission. By starting to uncover that genius at an early age, students can be inspired to develop their personal talents, increase and deepen their knowledge, and cultivate leadership skills to truly make a difference in their own communities and in the world. We help to bring out that genius and nurture it through play, creativity, movement, and study.
I strive to live my life in accordance with Gandhi’s message. Founding the academy is my effort to “be the change I wish to see” in the way children are educated today and in the future. I am truly full of joy to have this opportunity to forge a new path in education that may enhance the lives of many others.