Refugee High: Coming of Age in America

Refugee High: Coming of Age in America
A year in the life of a Chicago high school with one of the nation's highest proportions of refugees, told with "strong novel-like pacing" (Milwaukee Magazine)

"A stunning and heart-wrenching work of nonfiction."
--Chicago Reader

Winner of the Studs and Ida Terkel Award
For a century, Chicago's Roger C. Sullivan High School has been a home to immigrant and refugee students. In 2017, during the worst global refugee crisis in history, its immigrant population numbered close to three hundred--or nearly half the school--and many were refugees new to the country. These young people came from thirty-five different countries, speaking more than thirty-eight different languages.

In Refugee High, award-winning author Elly Fishman offers a riveting chronicle of the 2017-18 school year at Sullivan High, a time when anti-immigrant rhetoric was at its height in the White House. Even as we follow teachers and administrators grappling with the everyday challenges facing many urban schools, we witness the complicated circumstances and unique needs of refugee and immigrant children.

Heartbreaking and inspiring in equal measure, Refugee High raises vital questions about the priorities and values of a public school and offers an eye-opening and captivating window into the present-day American immigration and education systems.

Publication Date: 
August 10, 2021

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