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[personal profile] flea
I feel like I've been working pretty continuously - at some times quite hard - since school started in early August to get a Girl Scout Troop going at Casper's school. And I've "succeeded" - we have 4 leaders, so we can run both a Daisy (K-1) and a Brownie (2-3) troop, we had a parent meeting on Monday and have about 12 girls all signed up, and I expect to add several more who are definitely committed and couldn't come to the meeting.

But I feel like I've failed. 85% of the girls are white and upper middle class. The demographic mix of the school is only about 25% white, varying a little by grade. The paraprofessionals who ran the troop last year at after school (all of whom left the school, and after school is not an option any more because of a new district policy - we are meeting on Tuesdays at 6pm at a friendly church, kill me now I did not want to meet on a weeknight but the people present voted for it) managed to run a Junior troop (4-5) as well, and pull a lot of black and Latina students, with 60 girls total.

I don't know how they did it, except maybe having existing relationships with the girls and parents, since they worked at the school. I have tried really hard to send print messages home as well as emails for people without internet access, and to send all messages in Spanish as well as English. I always emphasized that there are financial scholarships for girls who can't afford the $12 registration fee (sadly, there are a lot of families in this situation - including one of our troop leaders. 39% of the children in the city live below the poverty line (which, remember, is only about $21,000 for a family of 4), according to the new American Community Survey data.) And the turnout was all people like me. I guess we keep trying to recruit. I have some names that we can try phone-calling, but I am terribly phone-phobic; maybe my co-leaders are braver.

I'm just so worn out by it all, and we haven't even started actually meeting.
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July 2016


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