Record Numbers of Homeless Kids Putting Strain on Schools

At 15, Jarvis Nelson should be in high school and even thinking about college.

Yet Jarvis is in seventh grade, and doesn’t know where he’ll go to high school — or even where he will be living — when he graduates from junior high, hopefully next year.

That’s because Jarvis has attended three different schools in the past four months. He’s lived in three different places on the North and South Sides of the city — including his most recent home, a temporary shelter in Lake View.

Jarvis, like thousands of other students in Chicago Public Schools, is homeless.

He is just one of more than 10,660 students who were homeless at the beginning of the school year. That’s 1,466 more than at the same point in the previous school year, according to a CPS tally.

read more:

Thanks to Kedmobee for bringing this to the attention of the It’s Interesting community.

58 Year Old Homeless Woman Lives Undetected for a Year in Tokyo Man’s Closet


A Tokyo man had to install video cameras in his apartment, after he found food to be inexplicably disappearing over the past several months.  The security cameras were rigged to send the images to his mobile phone.

One of the cameras spotted an image moving about in the man’s home.  The apartment owner phoned police, believing the image to be that of a burglar.  The cops were shocked to find the door locked and all the windows sealed shut.  Upon entering the house, the police began searching every nook and cranny, until they stumbled across a 58-year-old homeless woman curled up on a shelf closet.

She told police that she had snuck into the home one day, about a year ago, when the homeowner had inadvertently left the door unlocked.  In the year that she was living there, she says she had moved a mattress into the small closet space, taken showers when the man wasn’t home, and helped herself to some food.

The woman was arrested and charged with trespassing.

New Poverty Muppet Premieres on Sesame Street Today


Sesame Street is on a mission to tackle childhood hunger and homelessness, premiering a new character whose background highlights children who live in such poverty.

Lily, the newest muppet on Sesame Street, comes from an impoverished family.

Country music singer Brad Paisley and his wife, actress Kimberly Williams Paisley, will host the hour-long show, titled “Growing Hope against Hunger.”

“We are honored that Sesame Street, with its long history of tackling difficult issues with sensitivity, caring and warmth, asked us to be a part of this important project,” the couple said in a statement.

The show will air Sunday, Oct. 9. It is sponsored by Walmart.


Frozen In Indifference

“He’s encased in ice, except his legs, which are sticking out like Popsicle sticks,” the caller phoned to tell this reporter.

“Why didn’t your friend call the police?”

“He was trespassing and didn’t want to get in trouble,” the caller replied. As it happens, the caller’s friend is an urban explorer who gets thrills rummaging through and photographing the ruins of Detroit. It turns out that this explorer last week was playing hockey with a group of other explorers on the frozen waters that had collected in the basement of the building. None of the men called the police, the explorer said. They, in fact, continued their hockey game.

From The Detroit News:–Life-goes-on-around-body-found-in-vacant-warehouse#ixzz1R5Z1kmW4

Thanks to P.C. for bringing this to the attention of the It’s Interesting community.

The Neurobiology of Attitudes Towards Homeless People


When faced with the prospect of marginalized, alienated people entering our community, our brains automatically categorize into “us” and “them,” and we perceive dangers with “them.”

We unconsciously view “us” in a better light, and rationalize away facts that might cast us in a negative light. 

Our brains also automatically prompt us to devalue “them,” and cherry-pick data to support this view. 

We then unconsciously work to emphasize ways that we are different from “them,” even when those differences are trivial.

This automatic, unconscious overvaluing of “us” and devaluation of “them” leads to discrimination.

Freud described this phenomenon long ago as “the narcissism of small differences.”

Read this fascinating and provocative article about the neurobiology of atttitudes towards homeless people, written by UT Southwestern Medical Center Dallas psychiatrist Adam Brenner.