When Leigha Bishop, a pre-K teacher at Lakeview Elementary (LVE) in Sugar Land, Texas, complimented one of her students on her hairstyle, the child didn’t believe her. So Bishop knew exactly what to do: The next day, she wore her hair the same way — to prove to the little girl just how inspiring her hair was.
“Her jaw dropped and she just stared at me,” Bishop said in an interview with Refinery29. I told her, ‘You thought I was playing? We are going to be cute together!'”
The little girl wasn’t the only one touched by Bishop’s thoughtful act. Bishop posted photos of herself and the child to social media, where they quickly went viral. “This really touched my heart. I can tell it meant so much to her and all the little black girls inside of all of us!,” one Instagram user commented on the photo. Another wrote, “I can only wish and hope for my girls to have a teacher like you. Thank you for all you do!”
— Mrs. Leigha Bishop-Gatson M.Ed. (@LeighaGatson) January 31, 2018
On Twitter, Bishop, who has been teaching at the elementary school for almost seven years, wrote about the institution’s incredible diversity: “THIS is why I love LVE!! The diversity of students is just unreal. Because of that, I am able to reach and touch soooo many students and families of different cultures and most importantly….my own.”
Bishop also told Refinery29 that she wanted her student to feel beautiful. “It is important for these girls to know that they are important, too,” she said in the interview. “They have a voice that can be heard. They have a story that can be told. They have a heart that can be loved and respected.”