Karen Pittman's Youth Today Columns

Karen Pittman, Executive Director of the Forum, regularly writes a column for Youth Today, the newspaper on youth work. This archive includes articles from her entire stint writing for Youth Today and covers a variety of topics related to children and youth.

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Youth Today: Some Things Do Make a Difference

By Karen Pittman, April 2003

While the debate over whether after-school programs make a difference in academic achievement takes shape inside the Washington Beltway, more good news has been deposited on the bridge where research, policy and practice meet.

2003-04-01
Youth Today: Youth Consultants for Change

By Karen Pittman, May 2003

Summer is coming. In communities across the country, nonprofits, schools, faith groups and businesses will offer young people a broad range of structured opportunities. Some of those opportunities will even give young people a chance to contribute.

2003-05-01
Youth Today: Still at Risk, but Not at Sea

By Karen Pittman, June 2003

Twenty years ago in April, the National Commission on Excellence in Education gave the country a wake-up call with the release of A Nation at Risk, the report whose warnings about the prevalence of low expectations and low performance in American schools set the stage for today's educational standards movement.

2003-06-01
Youth Today: 21st Century Skills and Indicators

By Karen Pittman, July 2003

We're getting close.

On June 5, 50 hand-picked researchers, practitioners and policy experts from academia and youth development gathered in Washington at the behest of the U.S. Department of Education to prioritize youth performance indicators used to assess after-school programs the department funds. The stakes were high. The discussions were surprisingly good.

2003-07-01
Youth Today: Out at School

By Karen Pittman, September 2003

In July, the New York Post broke the news about the city of New York's decision to open Harvey Milk High School, the first accredited school in the country for gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT) youth. The Department of Education has run a small alternative program for such youth for two decades, but the $3.2 million renovation budget to create a stand-alone school marks a new level of visibility and commitment.

2003-09-01
Youth Today: On Nature versus Nurture, Success and Failure

By Karen Pittman, October 2003

2003-10-01
Youth Today: Don't Be Left Out Standing in Your Field

By Karen Pittman, November 2003

2003-11-01
Youth Today: Creating Character-Rich Communities

By Karen Pittman, December 2003

I'll admit it: I've got mixed feelings about character education classes — emphasis on "classes." My gut instinct, first as a parent, then as a youth worker, is that these kinds of lessons are best learned when they're embedded in other learning experiences and reinforced in life, particularly when the recipients are teens.

2003-12-15
Youth Today: One Man as an Institute for Ideas

By Karen Pittman, February 2004

David Weikart, founder and president emeritus of High/Scope Educational Research Foundation, died on December 9, 2003. Through the magic of cell phones, I learned about his death just as I was preparing to open the Indiana Youth Institute's annual conference.

2004-02-01
Youth Today: An Unexpected Gift

By Karen Pittman, March 2004

2004-03-01