State of Opportunity special: Do we really have a plan for at-risk kids?

Apr 17, 2014

Jennifer White, Carl King and Zoe Clark prepare for a conversation about successful approaches to creating opportunity for at-risk youth.
Credit Michigan Radio

There's widespread recognition that education creates opportunity. But schools are often expected to provide much more than just education for kids struggling with poverty. So what are the effects of that expectation? Are kids getting watered-down educations and watered-down social services as schools struggle to do both? 

In this special we talk to Paul Tough, best known for his book How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character; John Covington, chancellor of the Education Achievement Authority (EAA)*; and Carl King, an education consultant and reading interventionist. King puts a face on just who we're talking about when we use the label "at-risk" kids, and tells us what's at risk for the state if we let these kids languish.

Our guests talk with Jennifer White, our Facebook community, and callers about whether Michigan really has a strategy for helping at-risk kids succeed.  

We look at models from across the country and try to find answers to some difficult questions. It's an engaging conversation worth a listen. 

*an earlier version of this post included the title Educational Achievement Authority. It is the Education Achievement Authority.