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Going to school

This American Life/Bill Healy
This American Life, a U.S. public radio show, recently aired an extraordinary two part episode about Harper High School in Chicago's West Englewood district. Three reporters were embedded in the school for five months following a particularly trying year in which 29 of the schools current or recent students were shot. Eight died.

The experience of 'neighbourhood' is almost war-like for students at Harper, from the moment they set foot on their front porches in the morning. Being a kid on a block automatically makes you a member of the local gang, whether you like it or not. Getting to and from school is a stressful experience - walk alone and you're a target. Walk with other people from your gang and you're a threat.

A teacher asks his student how his summer break went. "It was good... safe."

Part One Part Two


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