Daily VideoMay 22, 2012
A Hands-On Approach to Teaching Dropouts
Since 1994, YouthBuild has trained 110,000 high school dropouts around the country to put up houses for their community and think critically in the classroom while earning their GEDs or diplomas.
The results are evident — 120 YouthBuild homes line the streets of Bloomington and its twin city, Normal. Drive 15 minutes outside town and you will find an entire low-income subdivision built by former dropouts.
YouthBuild McLean County is a charter school housed in a failed outlet mall, so there is plenty of room to teach English, math and construction to dropouts, ages 16 to 24.
While many applaud the work of YouthBuild, Economist Robert Lerman is not sure about the program’s benefits.
“Up until this point, we have not had really serious research that proves that it’s highly effective — it could be — or modest, or maybe even on just balance may not even capture its costs, ” he said.
YouthBuild director Suzanne Fitzgerald’s response?
“YouthBuild is a relatively expensive program. It’s a longer-term program than many of the other programs out there,” she said. “But when you look at any program, I think you have to look at what the return on investment is. And so, if you have young people coming out of YouthBuild and going back into the system, obviously that’s a poor return on investment. But that’s not what we see with YouthBuild.”
“Some people like learning like hands-on more than like just reading papers and stuff like that,” – Dontel Crowder, graduate.
Warm Up Questions
1. What is a drop out?
2. What does the term “hands-on” mean?
1. After watching the news story, what are your thoughts about YouthBuild?
2. If you had the option, would you like to attend a school like YouthBuild? Discuss.
Tooltip of related stories
Tooltip of more video block
Submit Your Student Voice
A seventeen-year-old black teenager was shot 16 times by a white police officer in October of last year for allegedly puncturing a police car’s tire with a folding knife. Continue reading
Young children from families newly arrived in the United States often do not speak English at home, making it harder for them to learn. Continue reading
A popular new hip-hop show on Broadway, “Hamilton,” chronicles one of the nation’s founding fathers and his “rags to riches” story. Continue reading
DOWNLOAD VIDEO In the United States, where hundreds of thousands of people arrive each year…
Politicians across Europe began voicing renewed concern for the ongoing refugee crisis that has brought hundreds of thousands of Syrians to Europe in search of safety.