Gevonee Ford, January 12in Washington, DC was recognized as a Champion of Change.
In the early 1990’s, Ford directed an initiative called the Cultural Beginnings Project, which looked at the early childhood development of Black children. It was a collaborative partnership between parents, childcare workers, youth, government agency representatives, and community elders. Through this inquiry we began to understand the importance of African culture and identity development in our children as they were being prepared to venture out into the world. Out of our work in Cultural Beginnings there began to emerge a community vision of the cultural education our children would need to not only be successful, but also to be community minded as they grew. Gevonee emerged as a guardian of this vision; someone who would consistently remind our community of what we wanted for our children.
Want to strengthen our public schools but don’t know how to get involved? AchieveMpls, the nonprofit partner of the Minneapolis Public Schools, is holding its second monthly public education engagement series called Our City, Our Schools, designed to help the local community learn about hot topics in public education and ways to get engaged as volunteers, community partners, and advocates. Open to the public, the monthly series will be held in a variety of Minneapolis locations and delve into issues such as the achievement gap, education reform, education policy, and other current topics.
This is an exciting time of year. Teachers and students are settling back in their classrooms after winter break and have important work ahead in the last semester of the school year. Our kindergarten students are striving to meet literacy goals, MCA-II tests are right around the corner and many of our students are preparing to start a new phase of their academic careers. Fifth-grade students are preparing to enter middle school, eighth-grade students are preparing to enter high school and our high school seniors are preparing for college and career paths. Each day, our students are gaining an urban education experience as they prepare to become global citizens.
What’s happening at the Longfellow School Site?
August has come and gone and the doors are once again open at the Longfellow Building at 3017 East 31st Street in South Minneapolis.
Presently housed in this unique and lovely complex is a growing and wonderful program for pregnant and parenting mothers. These female high school students are earning credit while continuing to balance motherhood, study and often work.
For the last few months, we have been inundated by scandals at universities that range from allegations of child abuse and molestation to deadly hazing rituals. In each case, the president of the institution has come under tremendous criticism and fire for failing to act, even when it’s not clear that they were aware of the incidents. In two instances, the president has been terminated (Penn State) or asked to resign or “step aside” (FAMU). And while it is true that the buck literally stops with the president of a college or university, the circumstances are not nearly as black and white as they are sometimes portrayed.