Dawn Jones – Freedom Elementary

Sep 17, 2014, 3:39 PM | Updated: Jan 15, 2021, 6:12 am

I have a grandson who is in the 4th grade, Chance Reay, that I take care of who goes to Freedom with three other grandchildren who live with me. Chance has been expelled from five schools since he started kindergarten for behavior problems. His parents have not been together for several years, his mother has visited him only once in nearly a year. He has some social issues resulting from his family situation plus he has been diagnosed with ADD. He has a very difficult time focusing on schoolwork, he has difficulty forming friendships and feels “picked on”. He is a loner, he is working on learning respect for others including his teacher.

Mrs. Jones has taught two of Chance’s cousins in previous years and we thought she was a wonderful teacher. We had no idea how truly amazing she was until she became Chance’s teacher. She immediately realized his needs and offered to go above and beyond her responsibility as a teacher. She offered to have him stay after school as often as possible for an extra hour and a half so she could help him with his schoolwork. He has been able to concentrate with the one-on-one with his teacher without other children in the classroom to distract him. We decided that he would stay 3 days a week so he could attend Scouts and a sports class on the other two days with his cousins. She saw this need for him so he could learn some social skills and feel more accepted by his peers. He was very behind the other students the first few months of school, but she worked with him that extra hour and a half each day plus many recesses to help him get a passing grade and in some subjects an “A” or “B”.

Mrs. Jones has had to have an incredible amount of patience and commitment to keep helping this little boy as he sometimes has outbursts of anger with tears and unkind or inappropriate language, he talks incessantly, he does very annoying things that have nothing to do with what is going on in the classroom. Mrs. Jones has calmed him down, has disciplined him in a manner that helped his self-esteem, she has taught him how to respect her and the other children in the classroom, she has taught him respect for property. There have been times when he has disrupted the entire class and made it almost impossible for her to teach her students, but she has never been unkind or belittling to him. Even so, she has helped him be responsible for his own actions. She has emailed me at least twice weekly to keep me informed of his lack of progress or his progress, of his homework requirements, or what we can do to help him succeed. When his grandfather or I pick him up from her classroom at 5:00 each day, she shows us what he has accomplished and takes time to explain his progress.

We are so pleased with Chance’s improvements this school year. He is truly a much happier, more productive child. He comes home from school and does his homework before doing anything else. This would not be the case without Mrs. Jones’ dedication to helping him. Mrs. Jones has given of her time and patience, she has not given up on Chance. She has had every right to refuse to teach him, but not only has she kept helping and teaching him, but she has recognized and brought out his talents and abilities. Chance is a very intelligent child with an unusual aptitude in electronics. Mrs. Jones has helped him academically as well as helped him realize that he can accomplish many things. Mrs. Jones has literally changed Chance’s future, giving him a gift that has changed who he can become. She has taught him what it feels like to succeed, how it feels to have a teacher who cares enough to stand by him through his behavior problems and his difficult times. He loves Mrs. Jones and will realize when he is a little older that she is one of the amazing people who helped shape his life in a wonderful way.

–Sheri Reay

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Usher performing at the 2023 iHeartRadio Living Black Block Party in Los Angeles. (Kevin Winter/Get...

Alli Rosenbloom, CNN

Usher will headline the 2024 Super Bowl halftime show

Grammy-winning artist Usher is saying “Yeah!” to headlining the Super Bowl LVIII halftime show.

4 minutes ago

Shelves of bottled water were far from full Friday at Fremin's Food Market in Port Sulphur, Louisia...

Jamiel Lynch and Rachel Ramirez, CNN

An October saltwater intrusion could threaten drinking water in New Orleans, so they’ll barge in 36 million gallons of fresh water a day

The US Army Corps is planning to barge 36 million gallons of fresh water daily into the lower Mississippi River near New Orleans.

2 hours ago

Shots fired near Independence Blvd....

Devin Oldroyd

SLCPD respond to shots fired near Independence Blvd. searching for suspects

The Salt Lake City Police Department is looking for two suspects related to shots fired near Independence Blvd. Sunday morning.

3 hours ago

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish men and children gather in the coastal city of Netanya on September 21, to pe...

Sofia Barrett, CNN

Yom Kippur is the holiest day of the year in Judaism. Here’s what that means

Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement, is considered the holiest day of the year for people who practice Judaism.

4 hours ago


Michelle Lee

The ultimate travel preparation checklist

Let’s Get Moving Host Maria Shilaos spoke with Claire Newell, Founder of Travel Best Bets, to learn some of her travel preparation tips.

5 hours ago

What does it mean to be human? For a long time, the answer seemed clear. Our species, Homo sapiens ...


Science paints a new picture of the ancient past, when we mixed and mated with other kinds of humans

The science of human evolution has made big leaps in recent years, and it’s painting a new picture of our origins.

6 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

silhouette of a family looking over a lake with a bird in the top corner flying...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

8 Fun Activities To Do in Bear Lake Without Getting in the Water

Bear Lake offers plenty of activities for the whole family to enjoy without having to get in the water. Catch 8 of our favorite activities.

Wellsville Mountains in the spring with a pond in the foreground...

Wasatch Property Management

Advantages of Renting Over Owning a Home

Renting allows you to enjoy luxury amenities and low maintenance without the long-term commitment and responsibilities of owning a home.

Clouds over a red rock vista in Hurricane, Utah...

Wasatch Property Management

Why Southern Utah is a Retirement Paradise

Retirement in southern Utah offers plenty of cultural and recreational opportunities. Find out all that this region has to offer.

Human hand holding a protest banner stop vaping message over a crowded street background....

Prosperous Utah Communities

Utah’s Battle to Protect Youth from Vaping Epidemic Faces New Threat as Proposed Rule Threatens Progress

Utah's strict standards of nicotine levels in vaping products are at risk, increasing health hazards associated with use. Read more about how you can advocate for a better future for Utah's youth.

Aerial photo of Bear Lake shoreline with canopies and people camped out on the beach...

Visit Bear Lake

Last-Minute Summer Vacation Planning? Check Out Bear Lake!

Bear Lake is the perfect getaway if you are last-minute summer vacation planning. Enjoy activities with your whole family at this iconic lake.

close up of rose marvel saliva blooms in purple...

Shannon Cavalero

Drought Tolerant Perennials for Utah

The best drought tolerant plants for Utah can handle high elevations, alkaline soils, excessive exposure to wind, and use of secondary water.

Dawn Jones – Freedom Elementary