Five million children and youth are cared for by our nation’s social service agencies because they’re experiencing homelessness, foster care placement, incarceration, or other challenges. And all of these young people will also show up in our schools while juggling other competing priorities.
Can you put yourself in the shoes of one of these young people? Can you successfully navigate the kinds of circumstances they regularly face, like juggling schoolwork and childcare, preparing for the G.E.D. while employed full-time, or meeting the demands of a probation officer while trying to finish a high school diploma?
Derived from real stories shared by actual students, “Rigged” is a choose-your-own-adventure-style game designed to represent the impossible tradeoffs that pit these young people's dreams, desires, and responsibilities against the wants and needs of the various adults placed in their lives to support them through difficult transitions.
With the goal of high school graduation in mind, you will be asked to complete common tasks or solve plausible problems under the constraints faced by a real student on an authentic timeline. While difficult, it is possible for you to win the game by receiving your high school diploma.
"Rigged" illustrates the various challenges students experience daily and underscores the need for coherent and comprehensive systems that empower students to advocate for themselves and give the adults in their lives the resources they need to serve them well.
Review the additional resources below on how to reduce the barriers these young people face.
And share to be part of the solution:
Technical Tips for Game Play:
- The game is played best in updated versions of Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, or Microsoft Edge
- Avoid running multiple tabs or programs while playing the game
- If you are switching between tabs or programs, make sure the tab with the game is selected before continuing to play the game
- Chrome users may need to give the game permission to use audio — look for a pop-up in the URL bar that looks like a muted microphone
Bellwether Education Partners is committed to reducing the barriers that our highest-need students face in schools. This includes eliminating silos between the care agencies that serve these students. In addition to the empathy-building, interactive game “Rigged,” we have produced three companion publications and a website to demonstrate how human-centered design can be used to improve policy-making and how multiple agencies work together to mitigate the effects data fragmentation has on students who experience education disruptions. These resources include:
- Continuity Counts: Coordinated Education Systems for Students in Transition
- Disrupting the Divide: The Role of Technology in Mitigating the Impact of Data Fragmentation on Students
- Creating More Effective, Efficient, and Equitable Education Policies with Human-Centered Design
- Design Methods for Education Policy