Every year, 10% of high school students in Davenport drop out of school. Well known school board member, Patt Zamora is a big advocate of programs to get those students back in school. The source of her passion comes from the fact that her herself dropped out of high school at the age of 16.
“I was married at 16 and we had 5 children by the time I was 23,” Zamora explains. “I did not get the opportunity to go to school back then because back in those days you couldn’t go to school if you were married, it just was not allowed.”
But Patt said she know her passion for learning would bring her back and 8 years after dropping out, she returned. She says be a role model to my children was her main reason for returning.
So with 6 kids, and a part-time job, Patt not only finished high school but continued on to earn a Master’s Degree in High School Administration and later a law degree. She did all while maintaining a 4.0 grade average.
Humbly she says, “I tell people this and I don’t mean for it to sound arrogant, but I think this matters because people should know there is no stopping point, if you really want something you can do it.”
Now Patt spends her days with children as an attorney in juvenile delinquency cases, which give her the perfect opportunity to become a mentor for young drop-outs as well.
“I try to let them know, don’t tell me you can’t do it. Let’s look for the ways we can do it and I help them.”
She is one success story, working to create more.
Zamora and Davenport Community Schools are starting a new campaign to keep students in school called “Drop Back In: Finish It!” The kick-off event will be this Saturday at JB Young Jr. High at 10 am.