Diane Sawyer Reports “Hidden America: Our Most Dangerous Schools”

By David Ford

May 15, 2013 4:07pm

NOTE: The report will now air on Tuesday, May 29. It was originally set for Tuesday, May 21, but was delayed due to breaking news coverage of the Oklahoma tornado.

ABC’s Diane Sawyer Visits Strawberry Mansion in Philadelphia, One of the Most Dangerous High Schools in the U.S.

Reports to Air Wednesday, May 29 on “World News with Diane Sawyer” and on a Special Edition of “Nightline”

With unprecedented access, Diane Sawyer takes viewers inside what has been officially labeled one of the most dangerous high schools in America and reveals what it’s like to teach, to learn, and to try to gain a foothold in life there. The report airs Wednesday, May 29 on “World News with Diane Sawyer” at 6:30 p.m., ET on the ABCTelevision Network and locally in Philadelphia on WPVI-TV. A special edition of “Nightline” will air later that night at 12:35 a.m., ET dedicated to this story.

435 high school students beginning the year. 94 cameras. 6 school police officers. 2 metal detectors. Welcome to Strawberry Mansion in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania – considered one of the most dangerous high schools in the country for the last five years. Most parents believe that our nation’s schools should be a safe haven for children – an environment that helps its students grow, develop, and learn what it takes to be successful as an adult – but at this school students have to be reminded not to bring their weapons into the school.

Sawyer speaks with the school’s principal Linda Cliatt-Wayman who, together with a group of impassioned teachers, is looking to chart a new course for the school. Linda is the fourth principal the school has seen in four years.  As a former assistant superintendent of public high schools in Philadelphia, she knew the task would be daunting, but her love of the  students drew her to Strawberry Mansion. Sawyer asks what her most nerve-wracking time of the school day is – her answer: lunch.

Hidden America” is a division-wide series of reports aimed at shining a light on the people, places and stories of struggle and hope that are not well known or apparent to many Americans. The reports also spotlight the creative and innovative things some extraordinary Americans are doing to help people in their communities. This long-term commitment grows from Diane Sawyer’s remarkable and award-winning “Hidden America” documentaries on Camden, Appalachia, and Pine Ridge. More on the reports that have aired this year here: http://abcn.ws/TuPv15.

Claire Weinraub is the Senior Producer for the “Hidden America” series.

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