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Baltimore educator battling breast cancer continues to impact student life while working remotely

Posted at 4:48 PM, May 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-01 17:08:31-04

BALTIMORE — There’s little in life that will slow Trinisa Chriscoe-Brown down.

The Dean of Culture at City Neighbors Charter School was diagnosed with breast cancer back in October. Despite doctors telling her to take to take the rest of the year off and focus on her health, she decided to work and go through treatment.

“The kids are my everything,” said Chriscoe-Brown during a FaceTime interview. “I treat them as if they were my own.”

This past Monday she started radiation treatment after two successful rounds of chemotherapy. She told WMAR-2 News she shared her diagnosis with her students in an appropriate manner. She knew they would eventually wonder about her hair.

“I was bald so I went from class to class to talk to them about it,” she said. “I told them was battling an illness and the medicine made me lose my hair.”

Laughing during the interview she said she told the students, “I’m still gorgeous and it’ll come back.”

She wanted the students to be comfortable.

Her colleague Tanya Foster Engram said Trinisa has helped inspire many students, including her two daughters who attend the school.

“She taught my daughter how to have more self-esteem. She is one of the most positive people I have ever met.”

Trinisa is currently undergoing radiation five days a week. Despite the commitment to her personal health she continue to work remotely. She may not see the kids in person but that doesn’t mean she’s let the relationships falter.

“Even now, I do advisory through Zoom and Google meets,” she said. “I’m checking in one them, asking how there feeling and if they need anything and if they’re able to keep up with their work online.”

She told WMAR-2 News the relationships she’s built are the most important. She said neither her diagnosis or the COVID-19 pandemic will stop her from living life.

“You’ve got to keep living and making memories.”