Wichita Public Schools administrator turns front porch into classroom to tutor student

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WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – A Wichita Public Schools administrator went above and beyond to help a student-athlete with his math assignment.

“I was getting frustrated really frustrated with it,” said Tymardre Williams.

When 16-year-old USD 259 student Tymardre Williams kept getting stumped by his algebra 2 assignment last week, he reached out to one of the district’s administrators William Polite to solve his problem.

“We were trying to do Zoom, and we just couldn’t get the computers and everything to work right,” said Polite, Director of Equity Diversity and Accountability for Wichita Public Schools.

Williams finally asked Mr. Polite if he could just help him in person somehow.

“I said well brother if you’re that serious, we’re going to find a way to social distance on the porch,” said Mr. Polite.

Turning Mr. Polite’s front porch into a classroom.

“I was up on the ramp, and he was sitting in his chair about eight to 10 feet away, and we just made it work,” said Mr. Polite.

A two-hour tutoring session on quadratic equations. Math was the subject, but the real lesson was perseverance.

“The fact this young man is just so serious about his dreams of becoming a student-athlete at the collegiate level and so hey who would I be to say no,” said Mr. Polite.

“I felt like there was somebody on my team that wanted to help me win,” said Williams.

A teammate who is also his mentor. Mr. Polite mentors Williams and several other student-athletes as part of the districts’ “Books over Balls” program. It gives middle and high school students the tools to succeed academically even if that means tutoring from a distance on the front porch.

“I just wish we had more young men like Tymardre that were taking the student part in student-athlete seriously,” said Mr. Polite.

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