The team’s first stop was the Education Law Center's Philadelphia office, where Hear Me interviewed nine young people from various Philadelphia High Schools.
The students discussed closing schools, adjusting to school mergers, budget cuts, class size, and the benefits of well-funded schools. Listen to these stories here. The night concluded with a group conversation over pizza, where students talked about empty classrooms, transportation, and school administration.
19-year-old filmmaker Jay Frye, who visited Pittsburgh for last year’s Hear Me 101 screening to showcase his own documentary, photographed the visit and shared his stories.
Jess and Alex interviewed eight students at Lingelbach Elementary about the effects of budget cuts on their education. Lingelbach had recently been in the news for having an annual discretionary budget of only $160 for the 2014-2015 school year, which equals about 40 cents per student.
The Hear Me team regrouped in the afternoon at South Philadelphia High School to interview 11 students about resources and funding at their school. Throughout the interviews, many students talked about the importance of their guidance counselor and stressed the need for additional counselors. At SPHS, there is only one guidance counselor appointed to both the junior and senior classes.
In total, Hear Me covered over 600 miles and visited four collection sites in just over 36 hours. Look for all of the stories to be on the Hear Me website soon.