Tuesday, May 11, 2010

President Obama Delivers Commencement Address to Hampton U

Mother's Day, May 9, 2010, took on new meaning as President Barack Obama delivered the commencement address to Hampton University students and attendees. He highlighted the importance of obtaining a college education for each individual, but also that their achievement impacts the nation as well as the global community. Obama reminded attendees of a statement made by Frederick Douglass that still seems to rings true today, "Education is Emancipation."

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Education Summit to Focus on School Discipline and the Pipeline to College Readiness

Concerned Black Parents and the Zion Youth Advisory Council are hosting the fourth and final Education Summit: The Village Takes Responsibility Part IV Explore the Impact of School Discipline on Academic Achievement and Success--What YOU should know & think about on Saturday, May 8, 2010. Feature presentations begin at 10:00 am with Umar Abdallah-Johnson, school psychologist; Sonja Kerr, civil rights attorney with the Public Interest Law Center of Philadelphia; Dr Wagner Marseille and Doug Arnold, vice principals at Lower Merion High School; Giovanni Campbell, defense attorney; and Detective Henry of the Lower Merion Police Department. The summit opens at 9:15 with a lite breakfast and is open and free to all who venture out to 92 Greenfield Avenue, Ardmore, PA 19003.
A trip to the office for disciplinary purposes is a step out of the classroom and away from direct instruction, the impact of in- and out-of-school suspensions on academic achievement is great. With that said, imagine the impact on a student who is completely removed from his/her home school and remanded to an alternative school? Worse yet, what does academic achievement look like for a child whose school discipline involves the police and the juvenile justice system?
In an effort to ensure that more African American students are college and career ready rather than tracked off into the pipeline to prison, Concerned Black Parents and the Zion Youth Advisory Council would be remiss to end the 2009-10 school year without tackling this subject as a final summit matter. In fact, even in the wealthy Philadelphia suburban Lower Merion School District at the center of this discussion has a disproportionate number of black and Latino students receiving more stringent discipline than their non-minority peers.
Developing a community "village" centered approach to school disciplinary action and outcomes, supporting youth and schools, and eliminating the tolls of black students thrust into the "juvie" system from school are a few of the areas to be discussed at the summit. The primary focus is on disciplinary action prevention, intervention, and keeping students on a track to academic success and achievement.
Everyone is welcome!

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan Proposes Increase in Title I Funding for Family Engagement

On May 5, 2010, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced the Education Department's proposal to increase Title I funding targeted toward enhancing family engagement in public schools. Schools receiving Title I federal funds are required to designate 1 percent of that amount toward parents and family communication, collaboration, relations, and engagement. That 1 percent funding level would increase to 2 percent: that is, 270 million nationally available to school districts across the nation to draw families into their child's' learning experiences and school. Another 145 million would be made available on a competitive basis for states to identify the best practices for family engagement.