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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Our Founding Fathers knew why civic literacy matters

On July 4th, we’ll celebrate America’s birthday and remember the people who worked together 235 years ago to form a new nation. They understood government, leadership, citizenship and the impacts of policies and decisions.

Today, many K-12 students don’t know how our governments and communities work, thanks to education trends, budget cuts and learning opportunity gaps. Without civic literacy, our students can’t graduate* or become effective citizens and leaders. Who’s impacted? Everyone.

How can you make a difference? By supporting Kids Voting Mecklenburg, a nonprofit organization that connects classroom education with learning experiences to provide the only opportunity for K-12 civic education in our community.

Please consider making a donation today to give students the opportunity to learn about and experience civics in action. It’s the most effective way for students to develop civic literacy and build leadership skills.

  • Online: PayPal (no PayPal account needed) or Network for Good (easy way to make a monthly donation of $10 or $20). Both links are also accessible at
  • Mail: Kids Voting, 700 East Stonewall Street – Suite 710, Charlotte, NC 28202
As we get ready for the next school year, Kids Voting Mecklenburg needs your financial support to boost programs that will educate K-12 students and develop citizens and leaders.

Will you give Charlotte’s students, and our community, the advantage of K-12 civic education? You’ll make a difference today, and for tomorrow. A great way to celebrate Independence Day!

*Civic learning opportunity gaps create achievement gaps. Today’s high school students – our future adult citizens, employees and leaders - know less about civics and history than they do about other core subjects such as English, math and science. For many students, little civics instruction is provided until high school. By then, the learning curve is steep. At CMS, more than 32% of economically-disadvantaged, Hispanic and black students do not pass exams, compared with 8% of white students. If they don’t pass civics, they can’t graduate. Across all demographics, students scored lowest on questions about local and state government. (NC DPI test scores)

Friday, June 10, 2011

What's your solution?

Teens are invited to make their voices heard on  June 28. Details below.

Speed Street violence
70 people were arrested, and one killed, as crowds gathered during and after Speed Street in late May. Afterward, city officials viewed photos and videos and heard reports about what may have happened. Based on these reports, officials believe as many as 60,000 people, mostly in their teens and 20s, were gathered in uptown Charlotte in an area near the transit center.

Officials are looking for solutions, including raising the curfew
Now, officials are continuing to review the situation and identify possible solutions so this kind of violence does not happen again. One suggestion has been to raise the curfew for teenagers, so that youth are not hanging out in the downtown area during special events.

Opportunity for YOUTH VOICE
What do you think? Do you think this will solve the problem of violence? Why or why not? What are your solutions?

Make your voice heard at a community meeting later this month. Teens will meet to discuss the issue with community leaders on June 28, 6-8PM at the Dowd Y. Details here:

Check the Mecklenburg Youth Voice Facebook page for meeting info and updates.

Learn more

Editorial: Sunday's violence sends warning signal

Current curfew ordinance

City council evaluating the curfew law and may expand it

Charlotte may raise age for curfew