We had the good fortune of connecting with Shantel Patt and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Shantel, how has your background shaped the person you are today?
My birthplace was Tyler, Texas, but I eventually made my way to Mount Enterprise, Texas, a tiny rural community with only 401 residents at the time of my relocation. There have been generations of my dad’s family living there, and they most likely will be long after I’m gone. I had fond memories of sprinting along the unpaved paths when I was a preteen and teenager. I did really say dirt roads. It was a little, rural city in the center of Rusk County that seemed to be very cut off from the outside world. I was a part of one of the few black families that resided there, which added interest to the situation. I grew up with the impression that I never belonged and that I was really different from everyone else. After my high school graduation, I relocated to Marshall, Texas to attend East Texas Baptist University. I found myself enmeshed in the local culture and surrounded by individuals who didn’t seem to mind that I was different from them. I learned as a child to never reduce yourself in order to fit into something you were never meant to be. Show courage. Be unique. Tell the world who you are. The world is too huge to consider in such tiny steps.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a firm believer that finding a good balance is essential in both my professional and personal life. It allows me to be a better educator, entrepreneur, wife, and mom. In the past, I wasn’t as good at prioritizing, and found that once I did, I flourished in many positive ways.

Class is in Session was a way to tell funny stories to surprising truths, all the while discovering an amusing way to inform my audience on ways to navigate their first years as a teacher while maintaining their priceless sanity. Reading my book is a journey through rough patches, entertaining moments, and ways to hold onto the love of teaching forever! Grab an apple…….and hold on its a bumpy ride.

My road to becoming a Published Author and a Super Teacher has not been easy. I become pregnant in 2010, which caused me not to finish graduate school the first time because I had to focus on being the sole-provider to not one but two premature children. My sons were born at 26 weeks with complications and I couldn’t focus on school and my children. I moved to Louisiana to be closer to my children, who were in the hospital there getting bigger and stronger daily. After three of the longest months ever, my children were discharged from the hospital and on the road to recovery, and I was able to focus back on building my brand until yet another stumbling block came into my life. I was laid off from teaching due to school closures and had no idea how I was going to take care of two children on my own but God. In 2013 God provided a new job for me in Dallas, TX and I moved immediately. Moving to Dallas was not easy because I had no family or friends here. Still, I knew that it was an opportunity of a lifetime and the boost that I needed to be able to provide for my family and to kickstart my Grow Read Learn Non-Profit and eventually publish my book.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
This one is simple! I adore Deep Ellum, Downtown Dallas, and all the city has to offer. My dream schedule for a visit from my girlfriend would involve shopping, getting my nails and pedicures done at my favorite salon, getting a massage at my favorite place, and of course going to my favorite club for nightlife. Of course, I would try to talk her into going to Greenville Ave. to get tattoos and to see the culture by going up and down the strip.

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I would like to dedicate this shoutout to my wonderful spouse Floyd as well as my two sons, Trevor and Tristan! My love for all things educational has grown over the years, but before having Trevor and Tristan, I lacked the courage to take the risk and follow my ambition of ruling the educational world. I discovered that you may eventually achieve great things by embracing change. Class is in session: The Expectant Teacher Survival was founded in response to a challenging couple of years in the field of education.My beautiful spouse, who has helped me and contributed to Class is in Session: The Expectant Teacher Survival, is truly a blessing from the Lord. I am aware that none of my accomplishments would have been possible without the affection I receive from my spouse and kids.

Website: https://www.shantelpatt.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/growreadlearn/

Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/shantel-patt-023551189/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/growreadlearn

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100094481894106

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/@growreadlearn

Other: https://www.tiktok.com/@growreadlearn

Image Credits
Mille Photography

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