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9-11: Looking Back...Moving Forward
Some things can never be lost...
Description | Remembrance Board
From Stuyvesant Teens | From Abanty
A Song For America's Youth
Transcript | Order Videotape

9-11: Looking Back...Moving Forward

Since September 11, we've heard people telling us that "our world has forever changed". At the same time, everyone's urging that "it's important to get back to your normal routine and activities." That's one serious contradiction. [Facts about the September 11 events] In this program, we explore how teens are coping with the tragedy and ongoing events...through the eyes of students at Manhattan's Stuyvesant High School near "ground zero", as well as middle and high school students outside New York City in Tarrytown, New York.
[Teens from across the country and world share their reactions]

"Every little thing about our lives has changed, and we won't find out until the dust has settled," says 13-year-old Jenn. Other teens talk about who and what has helped them deal with their feelings-- school, parents, friends-- and what they're doing to help each other get back to normal life. In a school-to-school videoconference, teens in Oklahoma City share their reactions and advice with Stuyvesant students, who were unable to return to their school until early October. We also take a look at ways of expressing yourself creatively, such as art and writing. Some words of wisdom from school counselor Deborah Hardy remind us not to keep it all inside. [Advice from Deborah and other teens]

Then: what it's like to suddenly find people suspicious and even violent towards you and your family. We meet Abanty, youth newspaper reporter and a Muslim coping with the emotional impact of prejudice and misunderstandings about the Islam religion. Other teens talk passionately about the dangers of stereotyping by religion or appearance-- and how it undermines American principles.

All of the young people we interviewed raise common concerns such as safety and how their everyday lives might be affected in the future. [Take our poll: will there be future attacks?] But they also bring up some positive changes: they feel closer to their family and friends, they have perspective on what's important in life, they realize the need for religious and ethnic tolerance, and they have a new interest in news and world affairs. As one teen in the program explains: in the past she may have had just sympathy for teens in other countries who live with the daily threat of violence; now, she has empathy. And in the end, we're all left with one thing: hope.
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"9-11: Looking Back...Moving Forward" was funded by MetLife Foundation and developed in partnership with the American School Counselor Association as advisors. The program is regularly re-broadcast on PBS affiliates across the country. Please check our schedule and station list for airtimes.

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