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How to prevent crime? Teach reading, writing

City schools CEO Sonja Santelises talks curriculum changes at Baltimore City Public Schools. (Barbara Haddock Taylor/Baltimore Sun video)

I write to express my concern for Baltimore's rise in violence this past year. I believe we can stop it over time through a focus on literacy in our public school system (“Baltimore can’t jail its way out of juvenile crime crisis,” Nov. 14). As a former Baltimore city public school teacher, I found that the way to empower children is to teach them how to read and write.

If children become literate, they can intellectually engage in the world. It opens up their ability to learn about society. It can lead to children learning about the law and becoming vested in their communities. Without literacy, however, children are without the potential for success and may see themselves with no future and turn to violence.

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Drayden Peters, Washington, D.C.

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