[caption id="attachment_17578" align="alignleft"]Students Kyshiana Walton (left), and Ashiantionne Garrett with Lucy Laney principal, Mauri Melander. Photo credit: Courtesy of Lucy Laney.[/caption]It’s noon at Lucy Laney Elementary.
The hallways are filled with little faces, folded arms, and stomping feet. A flat screen television that serves as the school’s bulletin board hangs high in the main hallway. A vivid mural depicting the north Minneapolis tornado gives the tragedy shape and color from the students’ perspective. The aesthetics of the school are wonderful and appealing to the eye, but make no mistake; the children walking these halls come from neighborhoods that have a history littered with high unemployment rates, unstable housing stock, rapidly escalating crime centered around an epidemic of youth violence and just about every other indicator such as lower test scores and lower graduation rates that points to achievement gaps in education.