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Nikolai Vitti: I see myself in Detroit’s struggling students

Aug 12, 2017 by

Detroit Schools Superintendent Nikolai Vitti and his wife Rachel Vitti will speak at a town hall meeting on special education Aug. 21.

Nikolai Vitti, the school superintendent, is used to facing pressure. But Nikolai Vitti, the child struggling with reading? Among the worst moments of elementary school came when his teachers would pick a child, one by one, to read a passage from a book.

“I remember sweating and thinking, ‘Oh, my God, please do not pick me.’ And then having to read and kids laughing.”

They would laugh because Vitti, now the Harvard-educated superintendent of the Detroit Public Schools Community District,  has dyslexia — a condition he didn’t know he had until much later, when he was in college. It caused him to struggle with basic reading, math and writing — and made certain words difficult to read or pronounce.

It’s an experience Vitti, 40, is becoming more and more comfortable sharing — because he wants to ensure that children with similar struggles get the help they need to be successful. And he wants to make sure teachers have the training and resources to meet the needs of kids who struggle.

Source: Nikolai Vitti: I see myself in Detroit’s struggling students

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