11-Year-Old Boy with Autism Fails School Exams

Eleven-year-old Ben Twist has autism. When he failed his SAT exams, his teacher, Ruth Clarkson, could have told him in a variety of ways that he hadn’t passed, but Ms. Clarkson chose to send a letter to Ben and his parents expressing positivity, compassion, and love.

Her letter highlighted Ben’s “other skills and talents” that the test did not measure:

  • Your artistic talents
  • Your ability to work in a team
  • Your growing independence
  • Your kindness
  • Your ability to express your opinion
  • Your abilities in sport
  • Your ability to make and keep friends
  • Your ability to discuss and evaluate your own progress
  • Your design and building talents
  • Your musical ability

This teacher’s kindheartedness brought tears to my eyes. If only we all exhibited such compassion and love, the world would be a much different place.

Please read the entire letter in the image above this post. I’m sure your heart will be as full as mine was.

Well Street

What a fantastic thing to do for Ben. This letter holds the potential for Ben to move forward feeling valuable and like he's enough despite his challenges.


This teacher should get the teacher of the year award. She clearly is an empath, and unless she only has a soft spot for Ben, her carefully crafted letter is likely a template given to other students who fail the SATs, providing each an accounting of their own exceptional skills and talents. God bless this teacher. We can all learn the power of kindness from this one exceptional, generous act.