Opinion

Insights from thought leaders working to improve the lives of America’s Youth

Donavayn Robinson

Donavayn Robinson

High School Graduate
For youth to succeed in education, we need a shelter over our heads, we need food in our bodies, and we need a community. So make sure a student’s basic needs are met before you send them to detention or punish them.
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO America's Promise Alliance
For centuries, religion and science have regularly found themselves at odds in defining the essential truths of our world—a debate that, of course, continues today. So, we should take note when distinguished leaders in those two, often-conflicting domains find themselves arriving at the same conclusion about a fundamental question: how do we out more struggling young people on a path toward success?
Caitlin Caswell

Caitlin Caswell

Policy and Advocacy Intern, All4Ed
Students began listing the names of teachers who had left in the middle of the year, all of them white. Ninety-eight percent of students were children of color, mostly Latino, and 86 percent qualified for free or reduced-priced lunch. It had not escaped them that the majority of teachers who had quit did not look like them.
Grace Schleisman

Grace Schleisman

AmeriCorps Promise Fellow
Harsh discipline practices focus on assigning guilt, but restorative justice works to identify why something happened and what the student and the community needs in order to move forward. It allows young people to be viewed as the holistic individuals they are, and it builds a better foundation to start conversations around relationship-building.
Candace Hines, Chalkbeat New York

Candace Hines

Chalkbeat New York
It took one of my kindergarten students, Andrew, to help me figure out how to handle my toughest teaching challenge.
John Gomperts, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
If you want to know what young people need to succeed, it turns out you should just ask them. They’ll tell you. And they’ll make it clear that neither miracles nor miracle workers are required to help more students graduate from high school and be prepared for the future.
Jamie Warren

Jamie Warren

Graduating Senior, Wayland Baptist University
I first experienced homelessness with my family, then on my own. I was born to a single mother and a father who was absent because of post-traumatic stress disorder he developed after the war. Throughout my childhood, my mother, two sisters and I moved from home to home, sometimes not having one at all.
Dr. Garland Thomas-McDavid

Dr. Garland Thomas-McDavid

President, North Lawndale College Prep
This public charter school in Chicago encourages students to do two things to increase their odds of graduating from college: Raise their GPAs and attend colleges with 50 percent or higher graduation rates for underrepresented minorities.
Dennis Vega, Chief Operating Officer, America's Promise Alliance
Chief Operating Officer, America's Promise Alliance
As I have watched the news about the separation of families at the border, I can't help but think that this is a story that could have been my own. My parents both came to the United States as teenagers. My mom left El Salvador when she was 15 for the same reason most immigrants come to the United States—the American dream.
President & CEO, America's Promise Alliance
President & CEO America's Promise Alliance
John Gomperts, president & CEO of America’s Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest network dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth, has issued the following statement in response to the forced separation of children and parents at the U.S. border
Maggie Wiley

Maggie Wiley

Intern, America's Promise Alliance
As students across the country have graduated from high school, we know that the transition into the “real world” can be a challenge. Here are 10 tips that will help make the transition a little easier.
Maggie Wiley

Maggie Wiley

Intern, America's Promise Alliance
I was diagnosed during my sophomore year of high school with dyscalculia, a disorder that prohibits those who have it from understanding arithmetic. The discovery of my disability was both a blessing and a curse. A blessing, because I finally knew why I never matched up with my peers in math classes. A curse, because my high school is focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.