When James Jette was a senior at Martha’s Vineyard Regional High School in the 1980s, the guidance counselor wouldn’t write him a college recommendation.
“Told me I should go to the military, that was my trajectory,” said Mr. Jette, now the superintendent of public schools in Milton, during his keynote speech at Monday’s Martin Luther King, Jr., Day virtual luncheon and membership drive for the NAACP of Martha’s Vineyard.
“It’s not a knock — it’s the reality,” added Mr. Jette, who moved to the Island as an adolescent to live with relatives after experiencing homelessness in Boston.
“This is a story that I was often embarrassed to talk about,” he told more than 100 listeners who signed in for the online gathering. “I share it because it doesn’t matter where you start, it’s where you land, and where I landed I feel very proud of.”
Mr. Jette, who played on the high school’s 1986 Cape & Island League champion basketball team, didn’t
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