|From left, San Diego High's Abdi Lopez, 18, Hoover's Oscar Camacho, 16, and San Diego High's Abner Lopez, 16, all found that the Mid-City CAN Youth Opportunity Passes increased their sense of safety and made the responsibilities of high school easier to deal with. Photo by Adam Ward|
In March, The Global Action Research Center released its analysis of Mid-City CAN's Youth Opportunity Pass program that gave no-cost bus passes to students at Crawford, Hoover, Lincoln and San Diego high schools.
Initial funding for the project came from the City of San Diego and San Diego Unified School District. San Diego Metropolitan Transit System required the money to be deposited before it could release the passes. Results noted an increase in a sense of safety, according to William T. Oswald, principal investigator with the research center, which collaborated with San Diego Unified and Mid-City CAN to compile the report. That was quantified as students with passes reporting confronting crime, bullying and sexual harassment less than those without passes. There was also a slight increase in attendance for students with the passes, although because San Diego Unified changed the way attendance is tracked during the study, more research is needed to validate this finding.
For students like Oscar Camacho, 16, a Hoover student and City Heights resident, the data isn't in doubt.
"I really do need the bus pass to go to school, to be successful, so I won't be late," he said.