Voices in the Hall
by Terry Preuss
Latoya was molested by her mother’s boyfriend when she was eight years old. Chungo’s uncle was shot four times in the head in a gang turf war. Ashley was dragged off school grounds in handcuffs and shackles. Sandy finds out she is pregnant, but is so ashamed, she conceals it for four months while attending school daily. Welcome to the world of today’s troubled teenagers.
Florida’s Sun Sentinel Newspaper calls "Voices in the Hall", “a book-in-progress of surprising depth, complexity and heart.”
"Voices in the Hall" is a riveting and compelling account of kids in our school system, as told to the one adult who will listen to them: their teacher. As students in an at-risk Drop-Out Prevention class in an urban school, they speak out freely through hand written journals they write in class, telling their stories to the one person they grow to trust over time, and who will do as much as she can to protect their secrets and guide them through a maze of personal, social, school, and legal issues, which at times seem more than any adolescent can bear.
Based on the true lives of real students, these personal, intimate accounts are heart-wrenching, powerful and at times shocking—a veritable cry for help to parents, teachers and society. Voices in the Hall dares to shout out an astonishing truth about social ills that plague our students—and that many educational systems turn a blind eye to.
"Voices in the Hall" is a must read for every educator. Just when you thought you understood your profession, you find you need to take another look at the kids seated in your room. If you have students you need to reach, this book is the answer. Within these pages, you will find a new perspective with which to view your most difficult, troubled students. "Voices in the Hall" has been tried, tested and proven by real kids in real schools to engage even the most struggling and reluctant readers into the true life stories of today’s fragmented youth--kids who live like they do, or like someone they know.
This book is a critical wake-up call for anyone who interacts with young people: parents, educators, counselors, lawmakers, judges, anyone working with students entering junior and senior high school. If you want to understand what goes on in the “real world” beyond your own four walls, and beyond the thought processes of you own mind… "Voices in the Hall" will take you inside the minds, homes and hearts of complex young people who struggle with unspeakable difficulties, yet sit in classrooms, all across our country, and are expected to perform like all the others.
For the mature middle school or high school student: You will be on the edge of your seat, turning each page as quickly as possible to find out what happens next to the students whose stories are being told. They speak in their own voices, as real as your own life, kids you might know, or try not to know.
These are the potent words of "Voices in the Hall."
About the author, Terry Preuss: Called to be a Drop-Out Prevention teacher in 2000 to students who were termed “difficult, unmanageable kids who sometimes have criminal records and care very little about school”, Terry Preuss, NBCT and award-winning author, walked into a new classroom and met a cast of unique individuals who changed her views on life, judgment, prejudice, education, morality, politics and religion.
Here she shares her story, inspired by students who touched her life… and changed it forever.
- Terry Preuss, January 2012
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