YWCA award honors teacher Pathfinder: Christine Scott Davenport's commitment to children and talent for forging paths for others to follow led to the latest award in her 26-year career as a teacher.

March 20, 1996|By Consella A. Lee | Consella A. Lee,Sun Staff

When Christine Scott Davenport isn't teaching her seventh-grade physical science class at MacArthur Middle School, you might find her tutoring children at Freetown Elementary School in Pasadena or helping with the mentor program she established at her church.

Then there is the jump rope team she started at MacArthur in hopes of jarring some of the girls in her classes out of their lethargy.

It is that commitment to children that led the YWCA of Annapolis and Anne Arundel County to honor the Glen Burnie woman with the Pathfinders Award, a tribute to women of color who have forged trails for others to follow.

Mrs. Davenport was nominated for the award by the Glen Burnie chapter of the National Federation of Business and Professional Women. She is a member of the group.

Deborah B. Pafel, chapter president, described Mrs. Davenport as a dynamic and dedicated woman.

"She doesn't give up on projects. She doesn't give up on people," Mrs. Pafel said.

Mrs. Davenport said she has received numerous awards before, but this one was particularly sweet.

'Something I enjoy'

"You were being honored for a multitude of things that you did," she said. "And I got the award for something I enjoy doing."

She started the jump rope team three years ago when she realized some of the girls in her class weren't interested in school because they thought no one cared about them.

The team, which has grown to include 37 girls who were viewed as potential dropouts, was her way of showing somebody cared, she said.

She doesn't get paid extra for her work, but her reward comes in seeing children excel, she said.

'Every child can learn'

"I believe that every child can learn if given the opportunity and given the support and motivation or whatever they need," she said. "It hurts me to see a kid in school and not on the honor roll."

Mrs. Davenport said it was her parents who instilled in her the belief that every child could achieve and stressed the importance of education as she was growing up on their farm in Kingstree, S.C.

"I guess that's the reason I wanted to be a teacher," said the 26-year veteran.

Her father, Vanwright Scott, expected his children to make A's and B's, she said.

"To him, a 'C' was saying you did the bare minimum to get by. That's why I have such high expectations for my kids," Mrs. Davenport said.

"If you apply yourself above the minimum standard, you can't help but get A's and B's."

Pub Date: 3/20/96

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