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Recent Fannie Lou Hamer HS grad featured in PBS documentary

A recent graduate of Fannie Lou Hamer Freedom High School in the South Bronx is one of six students from across the country featured in a new documentary about the experience of Latino high schoolers across the country.

Chastity Sales, who now attends SUNY-Potsdam, became homeless as a student, but through the support of educators and Children’s Aid Society officials at her school, was able to graduate and apply to college nonetheless. Fannie Lou Hamer is one of 16 city schools that the Children’s Aid Society helps operate as “community schools,” offering rich social and health resources for students and their families in a model that could become more prominent in the city soon.

Nancy Mann, Fannie Lou Hamer’s principal, told GothamSchools that Sales worked with the school’s Student Success Center, which helps students navigate the college admissions process. Student Success Centers, which are typically staffed by nonprofit groups, exist in several city schools and are seen as a low-cost way to supplement guidance that school counselors are able to provide.

The Graduates/Los Graduados” will air on PBS Oct. 28 and Nov. 4 at 10 p.m. It is part of a PBS series about “solutions to address the dropout crisis.” Another of the films looks at Pan American International High School in Queens.

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