Phillip’s Story

Education – A Family Affair

“I know some schools don’t want to hold kids back, even if they need it,” says Phillip, the proud father of 11-year-old twin boys, Phillip Jr. and Kamron. “But I’d rather my boys get left behind rather than go through life not knowing anything.”

Phillip understands what it means to go through life without an adequate education. As a child, his teachers passed him from grade to grade even though he could hardly read or write. He dropped out of school before completing 8th grade and could barely read at a 3rd grade level. “Ever since I dropped out,” he says, “I felt like I was lost in the world. I went into the military, but I couldn’t get promoted because I couldn’t read or write. After I left the military, the only kind of work I could do was manual labor.”

So Phillip was understandably concerned as he witnessed his sons struggling to learn in their former school. But he felt helpless. “When they’d bring me their homework, I couldn’t help them,” he recalls. But teachers continued to pass them into the next grade, despite their inability to adequately read or write — just like Phillip had experienced as a student.

So Phillip was excited when he learned about the Milwaukee Rescue Mission’s Cross Trainers Academy. He enrolled them immediately, and over the past two years, his boys have received the individual attention and care they need. He’s already seeing his boys thrive academically. “They’re doing so much better,” he says. “They’re already reading and writing better than me. And they’re praying now! Education is nothing without the Lord, and Cross Trainers is making sure my boys are growing up in the Christian faith. That’s important to me.”

But Phillip says there’s another unexpected benefit: He’s learning to read and write, as well. “When my kids bring me their homework, we go over it together,” he says. “When they see me struggle, they teach me. They’re helping their daddy learn to read and write!

“My kids love Cross Trainers Academy. They say it’s the best school ever. And I agree!”