Youth Driven Spaces: 4 Simple Ingredients to our “Secret Sauce”

Lazy, obnoxious, incompetent, disinterested – these are some of the traditional stereotypes that drive how adults interact with or consider youth.   Because of these beliefs, youth are rarely invited in as partners, co-creators or leaders into the spaces… Read More

Why Involving Teens in Staff Hiring is Good for Everyone

At Neutral Zone we follow a number of program and organizational practices that define us as a “youth-driven space”.  One of those practices is involving teens in all staff hiring.  Yes when I say “all”, we do mean… Read More

Teen got Game Too!

Matt, a high school senior and regular at the Neutral Zone, was noodling around on his phone about 4-5 months back and came across a photo App, Frontback, that he thought was a cool novelty. It takes a… Read More

Neutral Zone – A Youth Driven “Discourse” Community

Being youth-driven, we let teens have a voice on the “youth-driven spaces” blog.  I am proud to share this week’s blog with a teen I am exceptionally close with, my son Myles.  Myles was an active teen at… Read More

Give Youth a Seat at the Board and a Space for their Voices

At a recent conference, I met one of the Directors of Youth on Board who asked me if we have youth on our board at Neutral Zone.  I proudly shared that 13 out of our 29 current board… Read More

Giving Students Voice in School Reform

High School is a place where many teens feel like their voices are not heard. Because of the vast academic requirements placed on schools, and teachers in particular — many feel like they simply don’t have the time… Read More

Keeping it Real by Letting Teens Really Lead

Below is an excerpt from an upcoming book about Neutral Zone entitled “Not your high school cafeteria” published by teens at Red Beard Press.  Available here in March. Chapter 2:  For Teens By Teens: Keeping it Real by… Read More