Meet me in St. Louis, Louis, meet me at the... Marian Middle School.
I made a visit to Marian Middle School, a small Catholic girls’ school in the inner city. Underserved, they take advantage of every opportunity for their girls. The building itself is a trip to the past, old conservative, no frills education. The library purchased books for all the grades. I knew the girls would not be buying books. The teacher had explained to me that the campus was a “cash free” campus. It was known about town that girls in these uniforms walking to and from this city school didn’t carry any money, so no reason to bother them. There was no cash on hand at the school either, so why bother to rob them? Imagine that. Cash Free Campus. The teacher said it cut down all the bullying and harassment the girls used to encounter on their walks to and from school. No more stolen lunch money. No more pilfering at school. Maybe all schools should do this.
We talked about reading, writing, publishing, books, what they like to read, and one girl played the piano for me. It was a lovely visit. I think about those girls a lot. I hope they are enjoying the books. I hope other authors will also visit them and expose them to good literature.