“I never had much confidence as a writer when I first walked into Mr. Cravak’s English class in 2012. Writing was simply tolerable homework. Mr. Cravak’s emphasis upon creative writing brought my work to his attention, and when he noticed my penchant for the craft (after his classic SixWord Story assignment), spoke to me personally. He provided me with genuine encouragement; no teacher ever before had taken such pains to encourage me to grow intellectually and artistically. Throughout the year, my writing received his extensive feedback, and I grew bold, I grew confident. An extraordinarily creative writer himself, he taught me the beauty and the immense fun in creative expression. Mr. Cravak never failed to encourage or critique me, and he encouraged me to seek more opportunities in creative expression. He treated every student as an individual, and his personal attention to me and my intellectual growth was a tremendous kickstart to my creativity.”

– Iris Lee IBSH Class of ’16

“Mr. Cravak has taught many of our students, as well as, administrators and teachers, to be flexible, to understand there is more than one way to handle a situation, and especially to show how everyone has the ability to succeed. Since he has been a teacher at Hallandale High School, he has raised the educational standard for those students who felt they could not reach their goals. My life has been changed after interacting with this man. He has shown me how a young person can have wisdom beyond his years.”

– Leta Key, HHS colleague

“I’m grateful for Mr. Cravak for standing behind me, challenging me and telling me to always broaden my horizons, and to never settle. He cared to go out of his way to help me succeed, I am so appreciative for him as I sit and remember the things he did for me.”

– Andrea Palmer, HHS student

“Mr. Cravak has a gift that only special people have, he made a difference in our lives big time and I don’t think he really knows how big of a difference that was. I thank God for him because if it wasn’t for him I wouldn’t have realized my true calling in life, he saw something in me and motivated me to see what he saw and to take hold of it and run. Never a dull moment did we have with Mr. Cravak.”

– Ashley Augustave, HHS student

“Mr. Cravak is the reason I’ve been able to take the pressure here, such an encouraging person. Thanks for all of his positive comments, the many times he had for me to feel like I was apart. I shall never forget his energy.”

– Barbara Boyd, HHS colleague

“Mr. Cravak has been the only teacher who had the ability to inspire me to be an effective leader. He really knows how to do his job right, no questions asked. He is a true role model and I will never forget that. He has made an extreme impact on my future endeavors and my present education.”

– Gloria Salamanca, HHS student

“For once I met a teacher who helps students open their eyes to the world and lets us make it our own and guides us to our choices. He is a person who expresses himself with the truth, but in a way that anyone can take the advice and change themselves and the world.”

– Vanessa Nieves, HHS student

“I’ve learned not to care about anyone thinks of me. I learned how to talk and speak in front of crowds. I’ve also learned to love myself, and to never back down from things I want to accomplish. Since my Dad has passed, Mr. Cravak has been a perfect male role model for me.”

– Jalyssa Flynn, HHS student

“I remember the first time Mr. Cravak edited one of my articles. Seeing all those marks broke me down. I thought I didn’t have enough potential to be a writer. But he helped me to become mentally stronger and I appreciate the time I spent in his class. Because of this I later became an editor of the school paper.”

– Shanize Byrd, HHS student

“Stephen is so funny! I idolize his wit and way to make everything so entertaining. I thank him for making me smile.”

– Marti Deyo, Aomori Prefectural Advisor


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