Frank Martin explains challenge he faced as a teacher early in his career

Q. You said yesterday that nothing tomorrow will be as pressure-filled as 35 students, 27 desks, 18 textbooks. How on earth did you make that work? And was there anything you learned in the process that is at all applicable to what you’re doing now?

SOUTH CAROLINA COACH FRANK MARTIN: It’s the same school that educated me, in the same community that raised me. I had no choice but to figure out a way to make it work, because I used to be one of those. And you have a responsibility to educate.

And when you embrace your job, you figure it out. You don’t make excuses. You don’t pout. You don’t blame. It is what it is. And those kids were awesome. They understood the challenge. I had to be creative. It’s hard to give homework assignments when there was no technology back in the day for people to go on the Internet and read stuff. That means you had to spend a lot of time on a copier machine making copies of things.

Made me understand — here’s another part of educating in that scenario. Sending homework assignments every night, not very productive. So you have to maximize your time in front of them to educate them. And that’s what I try to do every day. I try to use every moment of every single day I’ve been in education to maximize my message, my vision, the opportunities.

I think we all dwell on negativity too much. We all worry about all the “can’t” rather than the “how-to.” And my job is to help young people figure out how to succeed, not dwell on the things that prevent them from succeeding.

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