Brooklyn’s school children can fill the Barclays Center 14 times over, with 280,000 enrolled in more than 400 public schools. Some have grown up faster than they should, others are still adjusting to a foreign land and a foreign language. They’ve been raised in the borough that is home to four of the top five most obese neighborhoods in New York City. This year’s report by the Citizens’ Committee for Children shows that they still battle disparities marked by the color of their skin, with more black and Hispanic students facing foster care placement, juvenile incarceration and poor grades than their peers.
of New York City children were born in another country. [/pullquote]
The borough’s children face issues of unemployment borne by their parents. Citywide, one in 12 came from another country. In Bedford-Stuyvesant, teenagers are more than twice as likely to be murdered than the city average.
In after-school programs, lunchrooms and basketball courts, every single one of this city-sized population has a story to tell. About fighting obesity one lap or meal at a time. About struggling to understand an education system amid underperforming schools. Their stories could be as simple as a dance class and as complicated as children with special needs that include Down syndrome and autism learning to express themselves through that dance.
Reporters from the Brooklyn Ink spent a month scouring the borough for these stories, here’s what they found: