This School’s Note to a Boy With Autism Moved His Mother to Tears


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Source: Twitter @gailtwist

Source: Twitter @gailtwist

Whether or not standardized testing measures full intelligence has always been a complicated debate.

The argument about how one or two test grades can decide your entire educational (and at times, professional) future has schools and parents rethinking the classic standards. Those who argue for the validity of test scores sometimes do not take into account how some very smart people just collapse under the pressure of test-taking. They doubt themselves and question things they should know, are often affected by outside factors, and more often then not end up failing these all-important exams.


Ben Twist, a young boy from Merseyside, England, is one of these individuals who has fallen victim to the standardized test. Twist, who has autism, failed his exams.

Autism causes lapses in brain development, which can interrupt social behavior. We can assume how heartbroken he must have felt upon receiving news of his failure. But Twist’s teacher, Mrs. Clarkson, took it upon herself to give Twist something greater than any test score ever could.

“They are important and you have done so well but Ben Twist is made up of many other skills and talents that we at Lansbury Bridge see and measure in other ways,” says Mrs. Clarkson in her letter.

She then proceeds to outline and list all of the qualities that Twist possesses. His mother, Gail, was brought to tears by the words of her son’s teacher.

The internet soon caught wind of Gail’s tweet, and many have been tweeting their support –  3,600 retweets and 7,000 likes and counting.

The overwhelming response, from both Mrs. Clarkson and people around the world, are well-deserved for young Twist.

We can all learn a lesson from Mrs. Clarkson: The passions and qualities that make each of us unique and who we are ultimately outweigh any grade or score we will ever receive.

(H/T APlus)


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