(484) 873-3547 hello@apathtohope.org

As the summer winds down and school is about to start, I pray this year that the decisions we have made with our children are the right ones. Let me explain. Since starting A Path To Hope, our approach to parenting has changed. The small things we used to worry about no longer seem important, in fact, the only thing that seems important is their happiness.

I admit I was once caught up in the “race” where I worried about classes and SATs, and spots on teams, etc. No More. Our youngest is in high school and incredibly smart,(bragging, yup, deal with it). I purposely steered her away from taking on too many “AP” classes because I personally do not see the benefit of them; she is sufficiently challenged by the rigor of her schedule as it is and is able to participate in extracurricular activities and clubs for a well-rounded high school experience. If a college wonders why she didn’t overload herself as a freshman and sophomore with every AP imaginable, well then, they do not deserve to have my daughter attend their school.  

I did not graduate from a top-tier university, nonetheless, I certainly have had a successful nursing career. I have realized it is what you put into your education that matters, not the sticker on your SUV. My children are amazing, kind, thoughtful individuals and those qualities will serve them far better in their lives as far as their happiness goes than any report card full of AP credit.

While I hope she is able to attend her “dream school”, I hope that dream is of a school where she will meet her lifelong best friends, find and explore a new area of the country, learn to live independently and become the best version of herself. THAT, my friends, is a sticker I want on the back of my SUV.

Holly O’Connell