​”Marietta you’re just another statistic for the unemployment benefit. We are just teaching you to read and write ​so you can fill out the forms”.

There is so much power in words and I started to believe I was dumb and couldn’t learn​. At 15 I dropped out of school and ​did exactly what they said, I ​went ​on ​the benefit. I had a daughter​ when I was very young and I spent a lot of time partying.

Later on I had two more kids, got involved in preschool, and I loved it. My older boy was on the Hippy programme. and I enjoyed teaching him. I thought back to my schooling years and dreamed of becoming a teacher. But the words from those teachers haunted me and I thought I was too dumb to succeed. I thought that if I failed I could always be a bus driver, because I loved meeting people. I started with the Foundation course, working my way through till I completed the degree programme.

As I walked across the stage to be capped I was thinking of all those people who had doubted me, school and family, But I did it!

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