Cindy B. Sanders

As Interviewed by Karel T., March 19, 2014
"I learned from my kids to accept everybody for who they are and to pass on the love. Pass it forward."
Cindy B. Sanders

Introductory Profile: About Cindy B. Sanders

I interviewed Cindy Sanders, who has seen discrimination, segregation and personally experienced how hard it is to integrate disabled students into mainstream education. When Cindy talked about her students, her face would light up, and you could tell how passionate she was about her students and job. She is so passionate that not only did Cindy spend school days with her students, but she also tutored many students on the weekends. She wanted her kids to reach their highest potential and to achieve their personal best.

Our interview was pretty relaxed and as I asked questions about her former students, you could tell she was reliving the moments. The interview was very emotional, with highs and lows, as she remembered the achievements and challenges of her students. Her voice would crack over the heartbreaks and disappointments she felt for her kids when she talked about how her students weren’t treated fairly by teachers, mainstream education students and administrators.

After 34 years of teaching in Austin ISD, Cindy retired in 2012. During her career, her first job was teaching 3, 4, and 5-year old students that had varying degrees of disabilities. Due to a back injury, she was unable to meet the needs of her students and had to transition into a teaching job that was less physically demanding, a kindergarten classroom. Then after teaching in kindergarten classrooms for many years, she became a computer lab teacher. Soon after her retirement, she realized how much she missed interacting with the kids and impacting their lives. Now she teaches part-time at Matthews Elementary School.

During the time that I have known Cindy as my neighbor, she has been a very enthusiastic person with a lot of energy. She is also caring, understanding, and empathetic. After the interview, I realized she has the same personality outside of her job and in the classroom. In her free time, I see her leaving her house with her husband on their Harley Davidson motorcycles.

Interviewing Cindy Sanders was very touching because I got to learn about discrimination and segregation from a person who has personally experienced it. Cindy is a perfect example of someone that accepts everybody for who they are and goes the extra mile to help anyone in need.