As for Curtis:
Curtis is in his twenties, and he thinks big in terms of the future. “I want to do something really worthwhile, you know. I did things the wrong way round; I see that now. But if I can get ahead on the streets, don’t see why I can’t get ahead on the straight and narrow.” Curtis had some trouble in his youth and has turned over a new leaf. “I got some training; got some good advice. Now I just got to keep focused on getting an education.”
Curtis brings his quick mind to the passGED virtual classroom, helping explain concepts that he’s grasped and showing off his mental math skills. “You learn quick to figure out how much money there is in a transaction on the street,” he says.
Curtis also brings strong opinions and curiosity to the classroom. “Who I am, that’s important. So, I figure I’ll try to learn about why things are the way they are. Why didn’t I know when I was twelve that I wanted an education? That’s something I want to know. Man, when I was twelve all I wanted was to make a big splash on the street. Now I know that’s a small, little world.”
Curtis makes connections with many inner-city young adults who come from struggling, and often failing, educational systems. He shows that high-school drop-outs aren’t stupid people. The truth is, sometimes it’s the smartest people who are left behind by school systems.