The Lottery



The bus ride was two hours long. There were days I got home and it was dark. I think we picked up every kid in the city of Bridgeport. The bus was as crowded as a theme park when schools are closed. It seemed like we were picking up kids at every block. The noise level seemed like it got louder and louder. Kindergartners were on the bus with eighth graders.  I was only in 3rd grade, but popular with the big kids. The eighth graders were my friends. They liked me. In fact, One day an eighth grader got into a fight because he wanted to sit with me.

We all got off the bus and headed for the doors of the building and officer Antonio was there to greet us. This was at a time when officers were not assigned to schools. Officer Antonio was at the school because of the bad neighborhood. The classrooms were overcrowded and chaotic. On one occasion,  one of the students got mad at the teacher and started flipping desks like he was a wild animal being let out of a cage for the first time. Everyday when we would get into school we would have to wait outside for about twenty minutes everyday to say the pledge even if it was freezing out or snowing. The days we had gym we would go to the cafeteria and run around for thirty minutes and when it was over we would go back to class. Everyday for lunch the food was free but would come in these black containers and you would need to peel the tin foil off to eat. After lunch we would have recess and the outside was just old pavement that looks like it’s been there for years And There was a gate that was blocking the the exit of the

school and you could see the cars passing by and people.  This was my school, it was what I was used to, and I like it.  

My mother’s opinion was much different. She did not like the environment, because the kids were disrespectful, the neighborhood, and safety concerns.  My mother would have done anything to provide me with a better education. She entered my brother into a lottery and he won. This meant that he and I would be given an opportunity to go to a school in a safe environment with a better education.  I was as excited as a kid getting an acceptance letter from Harvard.

When my bus pulled up to SSES, I lost my breath. The building was breathtaking.  The gym and cafeteria were huge. I was so excited. Everything in this building seemed brand new.  I couldn’t believe my eyes. How did I get so lucky? But now I was about to meet the kids in the school (would they like me?). I just didn’t know.  

The first kid I met was Benny because he was on my bus.  He was nice and spoke to me. The next kid that welcomed me was Adrian and Brandon. I couldn’t believe that I made friends on my first day.   The tone of the building was calm and the kids were very behaved. I was definitely going to learn in this environment. I was grateful for this opportunity and would do my best to be a good student.  Not a day goes by that I don’t feel lucky and appreciate the opportunity that was provided to me.




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