Tag Archives: Youth

OPINION | We Must Listen to the Students

by Mark Epstein and Michael Dixon


Almost 60 years ago, in the middle of two decades of civil rights activism that changed our country,  James Baldwin delivered a speech to teachers, in which he declared that the purpose of education is for students to look critically at their society and to have a vision of change they are willing to fight for. Without such a perspective, he says, we will perish, or follow the worst example of a Nazi youth movement.

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Cheering for the Cheerleaders: The Northwest Premier Junior Football Cheer Competition

by Susan Fried


The gym inside Mount Rainier High School in Des Moines reverberated with the sounds of family, friends, and fans trying to out-cheer each other during the Northwest Premier Junior Football (NWPJF) Cheer Competition. Six teams, including their minis (the youngest teams), competed for trophies and the pride of being the best cheer squad in the league: the CD Panthers, Benson Bruins, Renton Rangers, 5 Star, Jr. Huskies, and HEIR Academy.

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King County Youth Rally Together for the 2022 General Election

by Reneé Díaz


This week out on Red Square at the University of Washington (UW), college students are approaching their peers with clipboards in hand, asking if they have registered to vote for the upcoming election.

And young people are teaming up to get the vote out. Various organizations are rallying together on Red Square and outside campus buildings and asking strangers if they are registered to vote, and their members are phone-banking and going into classrooms to encourage each other to fill out their ballots. 

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OPINION | Expensive Out-of-State Placements Separate Developmentally Disabled Youth From Their Families

“I Want to Go Home” Advocacy Report


The following is an abbreviated and lightly edited chapter from a new systemic advocacy report published by the Office of the Developmental Disabilities Ombuds (DD Ombuds), “‘I Want to Go Home’: Reevaluating DDA’s Children’s Services to Prevent Hospitalization and Out-of-State Placement.” In 2017, the DD Ombuds was created by the Washington State Legislature to improve the lives of persons with developmental disabilities. The DD Ombuds monitors services provided to people with developmental disabilities, reviews facilities and residences where services are provided, resolves complaints about services, and issues reports on systemic issues within the service system. To read the complete report, visit the DD Ombuds website.

Continue reading OPINION | Expensive Out-of-State Placements Separate Developmentally Disabled Youth From Their Families

OPINION | How Youth Mentorship Nurtures Academic, Professional, and Emotional Success

by Raul Melgarejo


Mentorship can uplift confidence and open limitless opportunities for success. As a teenager, I attended St. Andrew Nativity School in Portland where their Graduate Support Program matched me with a mentor to help me navigate the ins and outs of my higher education journey. 

Being part of the first generation in my family to benefit from higher education in the United States, I needed a mentor to provide support in areas that the adults in my life weren’t able to provide, which is why I’m so passionate about advocating for youth mentorship, hence my role as the director of Graduate Support at Seattle Nativity School. The following are three examples of how youth mentorship has impacted the lives of local youth and Seattle Nativity School students.

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How Kaley Duong and Alexis Mburu Became Award-Winning Youth Activists

by Ari Robin McKenna


Kaley Duong and Alexis Mburu knew there was something wrong with school, only it took them a while to find the right words, to know how to phrase them, and to channel their innate leadership ability. In middle school, both joined racial equity clubs that began to illuminate aspects of the issues they were seeing or facing. In high school, both began speaking out more frequently, organizing, and building community around taking action to address the ills of a system they were still in. During the 2021–2022 school year — when Duong was a senior and Mburu a junior — both were unstoppable, working tirelessly for racial equity in schools while organizing, participating in, and speaking at events that impacted thousands.

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Another Move in Building the Detective Cookie Chess Park

by Phil Manzano


It doesn’t look like much to people driving by on Rainier Avenue South: a large patch of dirt ringed by temporary chain-link fencing. But to Seattle Police Detective Denise “Cookie” Bouldin, it is part of a long-unfolding vision to help youth through chess and build community.

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Washington Ends Practice of Parents Paying for Their Child’s Incarceration

by Agueda Pacheco Flores


After more than three decades, a law that dramatically impacted families in the state of Washington was repealed. The policy, known as “parent pay,” which required parents to pay for their child’s time in incarceration, came to an end last month with overwhelming bipartisan support.

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NEWS GLEAMS: Seattle Foundation Names New Leader, ‘Seattle Within Reach,’ & More!

curated by Emerald Staff

A round-up of news and announcements we don’t want to get lost in the fast-churning news cycle!


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South Seattle Students Eye Third Consecutive National Solar Car Championship

by Ben Adlin


For hours before and after classes, a group of high school students in Tukwila can be found hunched over laptops and soldering stations, welding and angle grinding, and occasionally driving circles in the parking lot. Their goal: to design and build a solar-powered car capable of defending the group’s back-to-back championship titles this summer at the National Solar Car Challenge in Texas.

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