Personal Statement : The Hood Essay

1778 Words Nov 29th, 2016 8 Pages
As typical with most friendships, during the course of several conversations the subject of our childhoods aroused. To my surprise, mentions of my experiences growing up in a suburban New Jersey neighborhood produced incredulous gazes. Based on my descriptions, it was concluded that I grew up in “the Hood”. My friends were surprised that my personal conduct and philosophy did not overtly reflect my background in a manner they expected. “The Hood” is associated with all forms of disenfranchisement: poverty, violence, low employment, lack of public funds, and poor education systems. In the cafeteria of my middle school my peers and I were labeled as “hoodrats”, “ghetto”, or “at-risk”. However, once the bell rang and I returned to my honors classes I was labelled as “gifted”, “high-achieving”, or “college-bound”.
Human beings never fail to place objects, ideas, and each other into categories. “The labels we use to categorise children can be medical, such as “ADHD” (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) and “ODD” (Oppositional defiant disorder). They can be administrative, like “social, emotional and behavioural difficulties”, and they can be informal (“challenging” or “disruptive”)” (Plows 2014). In an academic setting, offical labels are used to identify students that require alternative learning plans to ensure that the students’ needs are properly met. For instance, some medical labels, “such as “ADHD” can act as “labels of forgiveness” relieving parents and children…

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