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A Philadelphia High School Spotlighted on National TV For Its Violence

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(Strawberry Mansion High School.  File photo by Mike DeNardo)

(Strawberry Mansion High School. File photo by Mike DeNardo)

Mike DeNardo Mike DeNardo
Mike DeNardo, a veteran of KYW Newsradio for more than 25 years,...
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By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Strawberry Mansion High School is getting national TV attention tonight on ABC’s “World News,” and later on “Nightline.”

The story is being billed as a profile of one of the nation’s most dangerous high schools.

In one of her “Hidden America” reports, news anchor Diane Sawyer visits Strawberry Mansion High, one of Pennsylvania’s “persistently dangerous” schools.

“We have been in the school since January filming, and there were 48 incidents in or near the school while we were there,” Sawyer says in her report.

One was a lunchtime fight that principal Linda Wayman helped to break up.

Sawyer says after the brawl, students go on as if chaos were part of everyday life.

Area resident Anthony Reed wondered whether getting national attention could be constructive for Strawberry Mansion High.

“It may help,” he tells KYW Newsradio.  “It may help.  But there’s a lot of negativity in that school.”

Still, Sawyer, in an interview, said she found a “universe of dreams” at Strawberry Mansion — teachers and students who are determined to succeed.

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