For our town hall at William Penn Senior High School Tuesday night, we had our Stay in School experts, Bob Woods from the United Way and York County Judge John Uhler, to talk about truancy and keeping kids in school. We had representatives from York City School District to talk about the challenges of keeping city kids engaged in school.
That much was all planned.
Then Ginia Moorehead grabbed the spotlight. Ginia, a senior at William Penn, was the first one to raise her hand during the Q&A session at the end of the meeting. She marched to the front of the auditorium, took the microphone and spoke from the heart for close to five minutes. She told her own personal stay-in-school story, how she went from repeating grades and not caring about school to being excited about her classes and proud of her 3.6 GPA.
She said she has started a group at William Penn, called T.E.E.N. (Teaching, Empowering and Encouraging the New generation), so that she can pass on the lessons she learned to help other young girls going through the same situations.
Ginia was impressive. She put a human face on the issue of keeping kids in school. She showed the importance of doing more to help more kids get themselves turned around. By speaking up, she spoke for the hundreds of kids around the county who struggle with societal pressures and problems of all kinds.
And her message was simple: We are worth saving.
- Dan Fink