This High School Opens Its Doors Every Friday Night To Keep Students Off The Streets

April 8, 2019

A high school in Newark, New Jersey, opens its doors every Friday night in an effort to keep kids off the streets and out of trouble.

Hundreds of kids pack the halls of West Side High School on Friday nights because it's a space free of fear.

It's part of the Lights On program which is open to kids of all ages.

Kids are fed hot meals, encouraged to play sports, video games, or even lay down music tracks in a recording studio.

"Anything that keeps me off the streets I'll do," one student said. "Selling drugs and stuff, I'm not into that."

"I just realized that if I come here I'll see friendly faces," another student said.


Principal Akbar Cook, who made headlines last year for opening a free laundry room for students in the school, says they "haven't lost any kids to gun violence since the start of the school year."

The Lights On program was all made possible by donations from the community.

It goes to show what a school can become when the community cares about kids who just want a chance.

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