An Urban Warrior

I saw Eddie Bocanegra on the stairs after I had seen him on a screen. He had a few minutes, he said, before class, so we talked about his role in The Interrupters, a film about violence in Chicago neighborhoods that I had recently seen, and his experiences as a student. Then he went to his class while I continued to the bus stop. At that time, I was struck by how upfront and open he was, especially given his experiences, and I’ve sometimes wondered what he has been doing since his graduation. Now I know.

Commencing College

Commencement speakers seem to offer variations on the same themes, at least at all the graduations I’ve attended, and then comes an interminable march of graduates across a stage where they shake hands with administrators and teachers. That is a perfect time to consider why they’re, and we’re, there anyway.

Almost everyone (96%) believes, according to a recent Gallup-Lumina poll, that a postsecondary education is important. At the same time, many believe that it is unaffordable for everyone who needs one (79%) and that it needs to change to meet students’ needs better (80%). Continue reading “Commencing College”

Where We Live

The time has come, according to my kids’ principal, to play the residency verification game again.

This year will be the third time playing this game, and I’m no more excited than I was the first two times.

He doesn’t just want me to tell him where I live. He also doesn’t want me to affirm what they have in their files. No, he wants me to prove it over and over and over and — I kid you not — over again. Continue reading “Where We Live”