Finding Community Solutions

Friday, May 04, 2012

Patricia Stonesifer, chairwoman of the Smithsonian Institution and on the White House Council for Community Solutions, discusses her work and the White House efforts to reach disconnected youth – young people who are neither in school, nor in the workforce.


Patricia Stonesifer

Comments [9]

Cab from Manhattan from NYC

What ever happened to entry level employee training programs?

While working my way through college every employer I approached or worked for had some sort of introductory policy for new employees. Even high school summer jobs involved time and effort to introduce a student employee to the workplace and how to do the job.

Years later when I decided to change careers, I found I had to train myself. When I had no money for training schools, I literally had to wing it and pick up the necessary knowledge and skill on my own. It may have been the industry (in my case advertising) but I saw little in the way of an institutional training program beyond an orientation. You either showed up with a full array of skills or you would not find work. For a newcomer it is a handicap.

More than anyone, teens need a proper introduction to the concept of making a living in our society. We hear business sector complaints about lack of skills and training along with complaints that our educational system is at fault as an excuse to outsourcing jobs. Are there employers seeking to address this by local, in-house means?

May. 04 2012 11:57 AM
The Truth from Becky

There is quite obviously a lot that John doesn't know, how not to use stereotypical language to address a problem rooted in poverty is one of them.

May. 04 2012 11:50 AM
Leo from Queens

John from the Office: You obviously don't know the problems that parents have to deal with.. I suggest that if you are in the office you should be working and not free-loading and taking advantage of the benevolent job creators!

May. 04 2012 11:35 AM
john from office

All you need to do is take a ride on the subway and you see what the problem is. Words are just words. Truth to power, empowering etc.. Parents are the problem. Your kids are wearing their clothes like thugs and inmates. How about being a parent??

May. 04 2012 11:26 AM
Dan from Queens

Many of our children fail in school due to various reasons including lack of home and community support, mediocre schools and misdiagnosed and undiagnosed learning disabilities. Those wrongly diagnosed are offered ineffective special education services that end them no where but jails and/or street corners in our impoverished communities where they engage in self-destructive endeavors.

Nationwide, about 70% of fourth graders in some low-income urban areas cannot read and the US spends 60-70 billion dollars annually on special education classes that provide mostly ineffective services for more than 6,500,00 students. In 2009-2010 the annual per capita spending in one school in Far Rockaway was $15,561 for regular students and $49,825 for special education students who form about 14% of the student population.

There is a solution -the Lindamood-Bell Processes can help our children with learning challenges using their research-based and innovative services for diagnostic evaluation and required sensory-based instruction to stimulate and develop the children’s sensory processing. This will enhance the children’s capacity to learn so they can succeed and pursue higher education to further develop their human capital. The Lindamood-Bell Processes has enabled many children and adults who previously faced serious learning challenges to succeed.

Their program lead to sensory-cognitive development of concept imagery which supports the development of oral vocabulary, oral language comprehension, reading comprehension, written language expression, ability to follow directions and critical/analytical thinking. In turn, improvements in the above mentioned skills are expected to further enhance the children’s social and interpersonal skills.

The Board of Education should begin to consider changing attitude and policy regarding teaching and learning as well as the type and sources of special education services.

May. 04 2012 11:25 AM
jennifer from nyc

It really disturbs me to hear talk of data systems.. How can anything as lumbering as data analysis move quickly enough to help an individual in trouble. Help needs to be implemented on a personal level. I am all for legislation, bu tn the meantime kids are getting lost. And the mayors proposed cuts make me sick. There has to be another way

May. 04 2012 11:22 AM
Professor from New Jersey

Community based programs to empower youth is what we need. I do not understand why the Obama administration (Secr. Duncan) is supporting things like charter schools and other privately run, publicly funded educational solutions. Drop out students (or pushed out, as Dr. Michelle Fine calls them) are perhaps the logical response to the decaying and out of touch public education that we are currently providing. I wish we could strengthen public schools. Disconnected students might be the most empowered ones...

May. 04 2012 11:22 AM

Jesus, Brian - what is today -how billionaires can save the world day? First Broad now former Gates Foundation administer and Broad Institute board member Stonesifer. Corporatist "philanthropist" who just push papers around and ultimately make sure the status quo is maintained.

May. 04 2012 11:07 AM
Leo from Queens

Brian, Can you ask your guest if there are any REAL efforts now to work with local governments such as NYC's to funnel and coordinate resources and policies currently used to create a criminal record for poor youth into actually helping and preveting youth from falling into gangs and into the prison industrial complex. Seems to me that all of the NYC agencies (including the NYPD, Dept of Ed, City Council, etc.) are working against eachother without a coherent policy on how to reach out to and ensure that we are addressing the problems of youth - lack of education, interest, isolation, alienation from main society, poverty, self-esteem, peer pressure, mental health issues, and so forth. We would save more children and help our society in the long term if there was a coordinated effort to address and funnel resources to help our youth navigate all the obstacles put to them to guide them to be healthy, confident contributing members of society.

May. 04 2012 10:48 AM

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