Barbara Brayboy's Learning Story


It was my mother and dad who instilled in me my love for learning and a desire to become a teacher. I loved learning and going to school. My parents were farmers and we, the 8 children along with our parents were responsible for harvesting the crops in the fall each year. I would pray for it to rain so that I could go to school. My mom and dad always offered encouragement telling me that I could be what I wanted to be. Even when I was absent from school because of working on the farm, mom and dad made sure that I studied and read something nightly in order that I would not get behind in my studies. I remember my dad sitting me in his lap and reading to me a a little girl and how my parents from first grade through high school always told me that they wanted me to go to college and become a teacher. We lived in a very poor rural deprived area. There were no recreational activities for the youth. Therefore, we had to make up our own activities. Upon graduation from high school, I received two scholarships which allowed me to go to college. Mom and dad did not have extra money for college tuition. the scholarships paid for the tuition, room and board. My mom and dad sent me from $5.00-10.00 a month for spending money. I know that there were times when my mom sent me her last $5.00 when I was in college.that is just how much she believed in me and wanted me to be successful. One of the merchants in our area sometimes gave dad a few dollars to send to me. The merchant knew how much mom and dad wanted me to complete my college degree. Mom and dad were always proud of me and my accomplishments. They never gave up on me. My older brothers and sisters sent me a few dollars from time to time. When there was a school break, I rode the train to the nearest city to my home and mom and dad picked me up and when it was time to return I rode the train back to college. The train fare at that time was less than $3.00. Many times my older brother or a church memeber would give me the money for my train fare back to college. Financially, I had a really hard time getting through college. However, I was determined that I could do it. it was my desire to give back to my community and to have a psitive impact on the lives of the young people in my area. It was from the encouragement from my parents and family that got my B.S. Degree in Education, Masters in Education and certified in Educational Leadership. I taught for 29 years, severed as a curriculum specialist for 4 years, assistant principal for 2 years and a 8 years as a principal. I spent a total of 43 years in education and loved every moment of it. I thank my loving parents for planting the seed in me for my making my dreams and accomplishments come to reality.