Participant Success Story: Carvell
Carvell was referred to Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) Office of Alternative Education in the fall of 2013. Before Carvell got referred he was involved in several serious incidents which resulted in him being expelled by the OUSD Board of Education in his sophomore year. That summer he became a father to a beautiful baby girl.
After going in and out of Juvenile Hall, Carvell was enrolled in the Community Day School and introduced to his case manager, Leonard. After completing an assessment, Carvell and Leonard were able to identify three main areas of needed wraparound support: 1) Leisure/Recreation, 2) Education/Employment and 3) Family/Parenting and began the work of creating effective strategies to address these different challenges.
In February Carvell was readmitted back into the Oakland Unified School District and is back on the right path. His case manager, Leonard, was an integral part of working with Carvell to support him to make these needed changes in his life. Carvell has followed all the terms of his probation. He has stopped hanging out with “the wrong crowd.” He is learning the construction trade as a back up to his NBA dream and has, with support, remained employed. Carvell successfully finished the terms of his expulsion and is now attending a continuation high school where he has joined the basketball team. Each of these decision, he says, he made for his daughter and his family but most importantly, for himself.
When asked what words of advice he would give to other teens who are struggling, Carvell said, “I would tell them, when you feel down and out, like you don’t have nobody to talk to, talk to someone you know is there for you. Talk to your mom, your case manager, someone you trust. Once you keep everything in, you end up blowing up to release it. I want other kids to know it’s hard to change but you really got to want it. You gotta want the change for yourself.”