Ester Clayton has been selected Student of the Month. Mrs. Clayton dropped out of school before she graduated but always longed to complete her education. While in her late seventies, many years after she had married, had raised her 9 children, and had been blessed with many grandchildren, Ester decided to enroll in the Fort Smith Adult Education Program. She wanted to work toward earning her GED, but one of the main reasons she decided to enroll was to set an example for her grandchildren. Mrs. Clayton wants them to value learning and to realize a person can finish his or her education and earn a diploma at any age (even at age 83) with some effort and determination.
Since 2009, two of Ester’s children have shared the responsibility of driving their mother to her classes from Fort Coffee, Oklahoma. Over the years, they have assisted her with her class work and other needs while at school.
In Ester’s time away from school, she volunteers at a nursing home in Arkoma. She enjoys socializing and singing with the residents, especially those who rarely have any visitors. Ester wants others to know they are important and are loved. She brightens the days of many while volunteering just as she does at school.
Mrs. Clayton rarely misses a day of school and is always ready to participate in the lesson. She is very polite, positive, and pleasant and is an inspiration to all who come in contact with her. Ester is respected by all of the instructors and students no matter his or her age. She truly is a remarkable lady.