By Mira Gleisberg - Jan 19th, 2015
If you can dream it, you can do it
Once you meet Laura, you will always remember her. She is an amazing teacher not only because she loves her work but also for the path she travelled to become one with Tourette’s Syndrome (TS). She refuses to be limited by her disability and believes it has been the driving force behind her desire to achieve things.
For Laura there was only one career objective – to help children with their disabilities. Studying psychology was her original plan, but the academic schedule was not compatible with her TS, so she had to give up this choice. Her determination made her continue and in April 2014 graduated as an elementary school teacher. She says: “I have my goal and might have to go around to reach it…but I will get there!”.
Do her students treat her differently? Actually no. Her students do not seem to care or notice her symptoms. She explains that because of her TS, Laura can relate to pupils with learning disabilities and also identify herself with them “I have something too, it’s called Tourette’s” she tells them. As a teacher she is very creative and gives her pupils this motto “If you can dream it, you can do it”. Laura passionately believes that teachers should focus on student’s abilities and not their disabilities, give encouragement, look at the positive side of things and inspire pupils to be positive.
Laura’s commitment to helping children extends beyond her own country – Laura is now a teacher supporting education in Lira, Uganda. Through Edukans, an organisation that helps disadvantaged children in developing countries attend school, Laura is helping Ugandan teachers to improve their lesson plans, create class materials and support pupils.
To Laura and all the teachers, thank you! Your inspiration goes beyond the classroom.