Playing for Their Lives | The Most Dangerous Place on Earth | Girls & Sex | The Death and Life of the Great American School System | Little Big Minds | The Teacher Wars | The Death and Life of the Great American School System | Reign of Error | Empire of Illusion
This is a moving story about girls who have lost their childhoods, but who face the streetâs torments with courage and resiliency. ÂI want out,â says 10-year-old Blair, a tiny but tough girl who is extremely poor and yet deeply imaginative and precocious. Hicks tries to convey to her students a sense of the power of fiction and of sisterhood to get them through the toughest years of adolescence. But by the time theyâre sixteen, eight years after the start of the class, the girls are experiencing the collision of their youthful dreams with the pitfalls of growing up in chaotic single-parent families amid the deteriorating cityscape. Yet even as they face disappointments and sometimes despair, these girls cling to their desire for a better future. The authorâs own life storyÂfrom a poorly educated girl in a small mountain town to a Harvard-educated writer, teacher, and social advocateÂinfuses this chronicle with a message of hope.
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