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
Taliban gunmen massacred over a hundred students at a school in the city of Peshawar, Pakistan, in one of the worst terrorist attacks in years. Continue reading
An environmental protest aimed at a historic global climate summit in Lima, Peru drew attention for disrupting a Peruvian world heritage site. Continue reading
Since Sandy Hook, Connecticut has enacted tougher gun laws while grappling with how to prevent future shootings. Continue reading
As world leaders gather in Lima, Peru for a climate change summit, indigenous tribes are speaking out about environmental problems and deforestation that is endangering their survival. Continue reading
DOWNLOAD VIDEO The advance of the Islamic State of Syria and the Levant throughout Syria…