Innovative program cuts violent-crime arrests among Chicago youth

Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced new investments in mentoring, after-school and summer programs at Harper High School, 6520 S. Wood St. Feb. 7, 2013. He greeted Marcus Norris, 16, and other members of Becoming A Man (BAM), a program for at-risk youth. | Rich Hein~Sun-Times

Crimes committed by at-risk Chicago students dropped in half, and high-school graduations rose sharply in an innovative education program called Becoming a Man that is capturing national attention and could become one antidote to the city’s persistent bloodshed, according to a newly published study.

BAM focuses on adolescent and teenage boys on the city’s violent South and West sides. They’re deemed at risk to fail and are offered a chance to skip a class to participate in a program that tries to teach them alternatives to having “automatic” negative responses to stressful situations.

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