Invisible Homelessness: Baltimore Youth Speak Out

When you walk, drive, or ride the bus in Baltimore do you see homeless youth? Can you tell whether the youth you stroll past is headed to a safe, stable home, or whether she doesn’t know where she’ll lay her head tonight or find her next meal?

Students as teachers

Five years ago, fresh out of college, I taught my first creative writing workshop in a Baltimore school. That very first day—nervous, young, worried that the kids would see through my lack of expertise—I met a child who lived to write.

B-more moves towards empathy

We give young people the tools to express emotions that cannot be put into words. We help them understand empathy, and what it feels like to be in someone else’s shoes.

Baltimore kids are solving a national problem

There are more than 600 kids in Baltimore this summer who are proving there’s a sustainable way to solve a national problem—reducing the educational disparities between rich and poor children.

Showing up is half the battle!

My embracing of the notion that showing up is half the battle results from my own childhood battles with absenteeism. Like many Baltimore students, school attendance was a challenge for me; I became a habitual truant and dropped out. After a year out of school, a series of personal struggles helped me realize that a better life was only possible through education.

The Perry Hall case and the danger of prosecuting youth as adults

An unthinking “lock ’em up” approach does not adequately serve either the youth involved in criminal cases or the larger society. Maryland decision makers should rethink the practice of prosecuting and sentencing youth as adults and appropriately deal with all criminal cases involving youth in the system created especially for them—the juvenile justice system.

How to be gritty: what children don’t know can hurt them

If you’ve heard more in the past year than ever before about the role that grit and resiliency play in student achievement, that might be “a response to No Child Left Behind and this narrow focus on standardized testing,” Angela Duckworth suggests.

The Disconnected: Youth, Policy, Work

“Work is about a search for daily meaning as well as daily bread, for recognition as well as cash, for astonishment rather than torpor; in short, for a sort of life, rather than a Monday-to-Friday sort of dying.” Pulitzer Prize winning author Studs Terkel wrote this in his classic oral history Working, and is the […]

Maryland DREAMERS give me hope

“So happy all my friends get to go to college!” This is what my daughter, a sophomore at Trinity College, texted me when it became clear, late on election night, that 58 percent of voters had approved the Maryland DREAM Act, which will help thousands of undocumented students access higher education in the state over the next several years. A rush of tears came to my eyes, surprising me. It was a mixture of parental pride, patriotism, and hope.