Every year brings its challenges. 2017 has seemed a little rougher than most—hurricanes have devastated major American cities, White supremacists marched in the streets and too many other horrendous things to count have whizzed past us faster than the news cycle can keep up.
But this year has had its triumphs and feel-good stories, too.
Who can forget about former First Lady Michelle Obama continuing to celebrate college-bound students? She’s no longer in the White House, but her support for #CollegeSigningDay remains as vital as ever.
State Teachers of the Year Sing ‘Lift Every Voice and Sing’ in the Oval Office
President Donald Trump hosted the State Teachers of the Year for the first time in April. Recipient Kelisa Wing reminisced about how the teachers sang “Lift Every Voice and Sing” together in the Oval Office. The words carried a special power this year, she wrote.
To the Teachers Who Don’t Believe in Students
As a high schooler, Desiree Martinez met with a teacher who told her she wouldn’t make it into her dream school. And yet, four years later, Desiree wrote for La Comadre, she graduated from UCLA.
This Baltimore Middle School Choir Went Viral
A choir from a Baltimore middle school showed off their musical skills to the world when their cover of Andra Day’s “Rise Up” went viral. The Cardinal Shehan School choir was even invited to “The View” to perform the song alongside Day.
— The View (@TheView) November 13, 2017
Their First Day of School
In September, Philadelphia students were greeted by hundreds of Black men welcoming them on their first day back to school.
A Tweet Paid of Kids’ School Lunch Debts
Writer Ashley C. Ford had an idea at the end of 2016 that really took off in 2017. On Twitter, Ford wrote, “A cool thing you can do today is try to find out which of your local schools have kids with overdue lunch accounts and pay them off.”
A cool thing you can do today is try to find out which of your local schools have kids with overdue lunch accounts and pay them off.
— Ashley C. Ford (@iSmashFizzle) December 6, 2016
The idea caught on, and strangers donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to pay of low-income students’ school-meal debt.