Diane Tran, the 17-year-old Texas honors student who was jailed for missing too much school because she had to work 2 jobs as sole breadwinner to support her siblings, has refused to accept the more than $100,000 a website raised for her.
“We saw her trying to work and trying to go to school and trying to do all these things and then to have the judge put her in jail for missing school just seemed a little harsh,” said Paul Dietzel, who helped raise the money for Diane Tran.
HelpDianeTran.com is a project of the Louisiana Children’s Education Alliance.
But Tran didn’t want the money: “There’s some other kid out there struggling more.. than me,” she said.
The 11th-grader’s story sparked national outrage last week after a Houston judge charged her with contempt and sent her to jail after 10 unexcused absences in a six-month period, which is the law in the state of Texas.
After her parents’ bitter divorce, Tran’s been living on her own while working two jobs to support her younger brother.
Diane sometimes stays up till 7 in the morning doing homework after working shifts at a dry cleaners and a wedding-planning business.
She was tired from getting so little sleep, and that’s why she kept missing class, but she’s managed to keep up an “A” average in AP classes and aims to graduate near the top of her class.