Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background.
My name is Ricardo Sacks. I live in Marks, Miss., where I went to school from preschool up to graduation. I attended Northwest Junior College and majored in general studies. After two years at Northwest, I transferred to Mississippi College. where I majored in elementary education because I had a passion for helping others. After graduation, I started teaching in the Quitman County School District, where I’ve been for nine years.
What do you like about teaching?
I love to see how much my students grow from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.
What challenges do you face in your current teaching environment?
I struggle with getting the resources my students need, getting parents involved, and finding enough time in the day to get done what needs to be done.
Who are your students, and what challenges do they face?
My students are fourth graders, and, until recently, they have been reading below grade level. This year, most of my students are reading at or above grade level thanks to the literacy vision that our school developed a few years ago.
What are your thoughts on the Common Core?
Common Core is a very difficult assessment if your students are constantly assessed with multiple choice questions. I believe if we as educators make sure our students are getting what they need from the lower grades up to the higher grades, and teachers make sure that they are questioning students in ways where students have to explain their thoughts, Common Core would be just another assessment.
What’s your relationship with BRI like? How has the Institute supported or helped you?
BRI has been a great resource for our students. They have provided us with great administrators, different assessments where we can get student data and two coaches that are always looking for ways to make teachers better educators.
What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned in the classroom?
I have learned that every child can learn. We have to build relationships with each of our students and they will be eager to learn.