This Freedom Writer describes visiting Wilson High School after many years. She is part of the jury of the Freedom Writers scholarship, meant to help students who deal with similar problems of violence, poverty, and illegal immigration status that the Freedom Writers experienced. When she and a fellow Freedom Writer visit Room 203, they are disappointed to note that it looks sterile and unwelcoming, but she feels a mix of nostalgic pain and joy as she reflects on her own time there. She remembers trying to follow the students’ “Electric Slide” dance from the sidelines, but failing, like Ms. Gruwell, to learn all the steps.
Despite external appearances, the Freedom Wrtiers have succeeded in perpetuating their legacy and allowing children like them to benefit from similar opportunities. The former students’ nostalgic remembrance of dancing in the classroom emphasizes the Freedom Writers’ nature as a family, committed to learning in a fun atmosphere, where everyone can feel free.
When the two Freedom Writers shut the classroom door, they walk to the meeting to decide who will receive the Freedom Writers scholarship and feel confident that they are giving back to their community. She then drives to the Freedom Writers Foundation, a central place where Freedom Writers can gather, think, and share together, finding comfort in each other’s presence as well as organizing events aimed at benefiting the entire community. She feels proud and lucky to know that these high school bonds are still as strong as ever. She also realizes that she is slowly finding her own place in this world, having transformed from an introverted teen to a successful educator herself.
The strength of the Freedom Writers’ ties has allowed them to remain a stable group and fight for their goals. In particular, they have remained committed to improving their community. This Freedom Writer realizes that success is never static. Indeed, despite her various accomplishments, she still feels that she is in the process of learning, discovering herself, and becoming a stronger human being, capable of impacting the world around her. This attitude of humility and hard work allows her to look forward to the future.