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Group reports on black achievement in Youngstown



Published: Sat, August 25, 2012 @ 12:09 a.m.

Residents and organizations urged to work collectively to raise rating of schools

By Sean Barron

news@vindy.com

YOUNGSTOWN

The city school district will rank higher on the state report card when the local black community – including board of education and city council members, organizations, fraternities, sororities and church leaders – works more collectively, an education campaign leader contends.

“This is not an indictment, but a challenge,” Jimma McWilson, co-director emeritus of the African Education Party, said at a meeting Friday in which he outlined key findings and recommendations he says will help the district move toward academic excellence, the highest of the five rankings on the state report card.

For the past 15 years, the district has been in academic emergency and academic watch, the bottom two ratings.

During the one-hour session at the Newport branch of the Public Library of Youngstown and Mahoning County, McWilson reviewed findings, accomplishments and conclusions of a five-year Campaign for African American Achievement that ended early last month.

The district will improve when the black community takes greater ownership of its schools and ensures more children receive a quality and equitable education, with socialization and discipline as vital components, he noted.

Findings showed that 78 percent of black students are below grade level in science, 63.5 percent in social studies, nearly 60 percent in math and 47 percent in reading, McWilson explained.

The board of education needs to be more creative and innovative to address these challenges, he continued, adding that area churches should offer reading instruction during Sunday school, which will lead to a greater understanding of science and other subjects.

“The failure of the Youngstown City Schools to educate African-American students at an equal and equitable level has been a direct result of the failure of adult African-Americans in leadership positions to engage, educate, organize and mobilize parents, students and other community members around their roles, rights, responsibilities and power options,” the campaign said in a prepared statement.

Also, McWilson said, parents, community leaders and others must set positive examples for students.

“Children do not come here bad; they emulate the behavior of adults in the community,” he added.

Programs already are in place, however, to aid all students who fall behind, noted district Superintendent Dr. Connie Hathorn.

“I need everybody in the system to work together to move the district forward,” something that will take time, Hathorn continued, adding that neither McWilson nor anyone else from the campaign has met with him since the campaign released its findings.

Hathorn said the district is moving in the right direction and that he’s more than willing to work with anyone who seeks his help.

The campaign’s next step is to foster greater parent-pastor partnerships. A meeting about that effort is 10 a.m. Sept. 14 at Jerusalem Baptist Church, 2003 Wilson Ave.


Comments

1whitesabbath(738 comments)posted 2 years ago

It sure would be nice to see your plan work, 78% is awful.

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2Lifes2Short(3875 comments)posted 2 years ago

African Education Party, Campaign for African American Achievement....more and more African Groups and nothing ever getting done. Always talk, talk, talk and no action. The Black leaders and Preachers really need to take a stand on young blacks in society today. smh

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3ISIS(4 comments)posted 2 years ago

Just for the record, according to the Ohio Constitutions of 1803, the Black Codes of 1804 & 1807, the updated Constitution of 1852, the ratification of the 14th Amendment in 1867 and its repeal in 1868 and the amendments to the Ohio Constitution in 1912 - all educational, economical and social status legal advangages were for Whites.
Only after the US Supreme Court Decison in Brown v Board of Education and the 1964 Civil Rights Act did some States try to provide Blacks with a better quality of education with the public dollars they were paying.
Valuing education and receiving one is not the same.
However, I do agree with your statement that you do have to value it in order to make the most of it once it is offered.

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4ISIS(4 comments)posted 2 years ago

Just for the record, go to www.aaachievementmatterscampaign.com and see what ACTIONS this group has been taking before you assume they are about talk, talk, talk or want the rules bent for Black Children. Thry have advocated for and honored other children as well as Blacks.

They are very involved with the State Academic Distress Commission's Academic Recovery Plan to move YCS to Continuous Improvement and this press conference was to challenge the adults in the Black CommunityLeadership to live up to the title of Leader and help get the District to Academic Excellence within the next 24 months by working directly with the parents and students in their churches and the communities around the schools in their communities.

By The Numbers:
This Group has awarded 3,587 student achievers, 350 Most Inspiring Teachers and brought together over 15,000 parents, family and community members who care about public education in Youngstown.

Is it enough? No. But is it more than what had been done before they arrived on the scene? Yes.

The next step is to double the performance of the past and get Youngstown City Schools to Academic Excellence in the next 24 months.

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5Papamafia(5 comments)posted 2 years ago

I would be more happier if they would stop thinking they were such great killers and put the guns down. You want to be a tough guy?? Go fight the fools over in Iraq or the other towel head countries, they shoot back. Be even smarter, go back to school and learn a real education.

Suggest removal:

6ISIS(4 comments)posted 2 years ago

Just for the record, according to the Ohio Constitutions of 1803, the Black Codes of 1804 & 1807, the updated Constitution of 1852, the ratification of the 14th Amendment in 1867 and its repeal in 1868 and the amendments to the Ohio Constitution in 1912 - all educational, economical and social status legal advantages were for Whites.
Only after the US Supreme Court Decison in Brown v Board of Education and the 1964 Civil Rights Act did some States try to provide Blacks with a better quality of education with the public dollars they were paying.
Valuing education and receiving one is not the same.
However, I do agree with your statement that you do have to value it in order to make the most of it once it is offered.

Suggest removal:

7southsidedave(4780 comments)posted 2 years ago

Why do we need black achievement stats? Rather, we should be concerned about educational achievement of all people.

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8taxpayer1001(274 comments)posted 2 years ago

Isis - JUST FOR THE RECORD..I really couldn't make myself read all of your posts to completion because it got old after I finished the first one. You seem to be trying to say that because african americans didn't get the same opportunities in education in 1912 etc that it should have some bearing on how they are treated now.

I think that it should be education for all of the children going to these schools, not by color! What happened over 100 years ago has nothing to do with what is happening now!

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9Lifes2Short(3875 comments)posted 2 years ago

IRISH

THE CAMPAIGN FOR AFRICAN AMERICAN
ACHIEVEMENT

THE CAMPAIGN IS THE AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITY'S RESPONSE TO THE SOCIAL, ACADEMIC AND CAREER CRISIS
FACING OUR YOUTH, FAMILIES AND COMMUNITY.

""Just for the record, go to www.aaachievementmatterscampaign.com and see what ACTIONS this group has been taking before you assume they are about talk, talk, talk or want the rules bent for Black Children. ""

All I see is a bunch of words and pictures. I'm all for it, if ACTIONS were taken instead of passing out awards and slogans.

""Thry have advocated for and honored other children as well as Blacks."""

Really? All I see, it's all about blacks. Which nothing is wrong with that, but how many Parent(s) really discipline there children to achieve success through education?? If your campaign can address that and show the results, then that's a start. Your targets should be the ones that have no moral's, no discipline, no parenting, etc. Thank God there are more that do succeed, but you need to take the hood out of the young wanna be gangsta.

1803? 1804? 1852?? Are you serious? We are in 2012 in case you haven't noticed. The past is the past, it's over and done with, can't change anything. Instead of dwelling in the past, build a future!!!!

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