Back of the Yards

Posted Sep. 5, 2017

‘Will They Cancel Everything?’ A DREAMer Copes With the End of DACA

My neighbor, Oscar Carrillo, has lived almost all of his 18 years in legal limbo. His parents brought him to the United States as a…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted May 26, 2017

Sometimes Your Kids Can Be What It Takes to Go Back to School for the Third Time and Graduate

Like many first-generation college Latinx students, Priscila González struggled through her freshman and sophomore years at Chicago State University. She struggled with managing time, learning…

By Claudia Alvidrez

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Posted May 2, 2017

Chicago’s New Graduation Requirement Can Work, If Students Have the Support They Need

This June, Back of the Yards College Prep High School in Chicago will hold its first graduation ceremony. It’s a brand-new neighborhood high school where…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted Oct. 6, 2016

How Chicago’s Noble Network Pioneered High School Innovation at Scale

If you set foot on campus at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana, the Land of Lincoln’s flagship four-year school, 1 of every 5 Black…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted June 29, 2016

Coffee Break: Chicago Principal Barton Dassinger Tells Us the Truth About Personalized Learning

Barton Dassinger, principal of Chavez Elementary in Chicago’s Back of the Yards neighborhood, promises to give his children more guidance on picking a college major…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted May 26, 2016

I Wasn’t Getting Deported, I Was Going to College

Growing up, it was hard for me to find the right path. But thanks to Rauner College Prep, a Noble Network high school in Chicago,…

By Manuel Cardoza

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Posted Jan. 7, 2016

How My Neighbors Taught Me That Success Is Not One-Size-Fits-All

The Sunday before Christmas, my friends Fernando and Oscar came by for a visit. When they were small, they lived in an apartment across the…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted Oct. 6, 2015

Thanks for Calling My Daughter M’ija

M’ija. My daughter. Sweetheart. I have long had an observer’s love for this Spanish word, a contraction of “mi hija,” my daughter. When I first…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted Nov. 13, 2017

The Worst Thing About Being a Homeless Student Was the Hunger

Have you ever been so hungry that it caused you physical pain? I’m not talking the kind of hunger that sneaks up when you’ve realized…

By Lizzy Shoben

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Posted Nov. 10, 2017

Could This Teacher and Leadership Program Be Part of the ‘Secret Sauce’ for Chicago Schools?

In most urban school districts, “turnaround” is a dirty word. Turnaround schools are first identified as failing and left to languish for some time in…

By Maureen Kelleher

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Posted Nov. 13, 2017

I Didn’t Want My Students to Have to Choose Between Hunger and Making Friends

I have a weakness. I’m not good at saying no. Last summer, I was invited to attend a focus group on school breakfast at the…

By Angela Homan

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