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Book Release Celebrates Young Authors at Two SCOE Schools

Colley and Hickey Students Proudly Share Their Collaborative Work

Amira T holding enlarged cover artwork: Walking from the Parking Lot to School

At the May 30 book release event, Colley student Amira T. shared how the writing project helped her express herself in a different way.

Student writers from two Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) junior/senior high schools—Elinor Lincoln Hickey and Nathaniel S. Colley, Sr.—took turns celebrating the release of their collaborative book, Walking from the Parking Lot to School. May 28 (Hickey) and May 30 (Colley) events were filled with excitement and pride as students signed copies of the book and read some of their poignant and creative works aloud.

Colley student Amira T. shared her journey of personal growth through the program. “At the beginning of the semester, I was nervous. But then I opened up to everyone in the group and participated in all the activities. It helped me express myself in a different way.”

Walking from the Parking Lot to School is a compilation of poetry and prose that showcases the talents and voices of these young authors. The book is the result of a unique collaboration between the students at both schools, brought together through the efforts of 916 Ink, Sacramento’s arts-based creative writing and literacy nonprofit.

This writing project not only fostered students’ creativity but also helped them develop into confident communicators and published authors. Workshops were led by two skilled facilitators from 916 Ink, who guided the students in unlocking their writing and literacy potential during the semester-long program.

Alternative Education Teacher Jennifer Leeper highlighted the impact of 916 Ink on the students. “916 Ink helps students not only develop their voice but also to feel like their voice is important, which is something that they don’t always feel. Students start to see themselves as writers, view their peers and classmates as writers, and actively participate in the writing journey as they grow.”

Through the support of 916 Ink staff and the encouragement of their teachers, these students have discovered the power of their own voices and the importance of storytelling. The launch events weren’t just about the release of a book, but also about recognizing the transformative journey the students undertook. They celebrated the young authors for their incredible achievements and for sharing their unique perspectives with the world.

Illustrated book cover showing students walking

Walking from the Parking Lot to School is a book of poetry and prose written by Hickey and Colley students.

Students posing with staff

Hickey students signed copies of their newly released book, celebrating with 916 Ink staff on May 28.

Student holding copies of the book.

Colley students also signed copies of the book, published at the culmination of a semester-long 916 Ink workshop series.