Urban farming in Philadelphia has been, with a few exceptions, the territory of community activists, nutrition and anti-hunger advocates and individuals growing food to serve their own families. But...
This kind of low-tech puppetry — a bundle of fabric animated by black lights, a hand with Groucho Marx glasses on the wrist, or just a well-placed flashlight beam — doesn't leave room for error. But Leila Ghaznavi doesn't need it.
Philly teachers made it through their first day back at school, in many cases without counselors, assistant principals, librarians and nurses — but it wasn't always pretty. How they're going to make it through 179 more of them isn't totally clear.
Take Robeson High School in West Philly, which received students from closed schools including Bok, University City and Lamberton. The school is sharing a counselor with six other schools, according to 9th- and 11th-grade English teacher Andrew Saltz. That's already proving to be a problem: One student had experienced a death in a family, but the school has no grief counseling available. Saltz scrambled to come up with an external referral. And many of his other students need fee-waivers for the SATs, and they need the counselor to apply for them. "She said that was not on the list of things she was doing," Saltz says. "I don't know who's going to send out transcripts — kids are already appying for rolling admission, so I have no idea. And some schools require a letter from a guidance counselor. So I don't know what we're going to do."
"I found this app for their smartphone, which helps them search scholarships, and I got really excited. And then I got really depressed, because I'm trying to replace a guidance counselor with a dollar smartphone app."