Katie Drake is a Gifted and Talented Educator, Lone Star Leadership Academy facilitator, and serves on Education in Action’s Board of Educators. She received the following inquiry from the parent of a nominated student: “My son has been invited to participate in the Lone Star Leadership Academy this summer and I am hoping you could give me your input as you are listed on the Board of Educators. He is currently a 5th grader, and as I am in secondary education, I have never heard of this academy nor anyone who has attended from my district. I am hoping you can give me some insight and “confidence” in sending my son on a trip for a week with a group of people I don’t know. (I hope you can understand my concern!)”
I'd be happy to tell you a few things about the camp.
I first found out about the camp as a parent when my son was nominated in 5th grade. I learned more about them by visiting the website and visiting their booth at the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented Annual Conference. My son went to the Austin trip that year.
I would like to tell you how significant your programs have been for my daughter. We had heard about Lone Star Leadership Academy, but could not imagine how successful your programs could be. Being able to see the photos in the middle of the week was a wonderful, unexpected addition. When she got off the bus that Friday back in Dallas, we thought the stories would never end. She had made such good friends and kept up with them by e-mail throughout the entire school year despite being from such far-flung places as Eagle Pass, Brownsville, and Southlake. But friends were just the tip of iceberg. She retold to everyone all the Texas history she experienced, how cool it would be to be a docent for the LBJ Library, the wonders of waiting for the bats, and every detail she learned at the Texas State cemetery and the archives. In fact, she became our family's historian and tour guide on a trip back to Austin so the rest of us could relive her joy. These experiences were especially important for our daughter because, unlike most going-into-7th-graders, she attends an International...more