Senator Kimberly Lightford and the Illinois
Legislative Black Caucus Need Your Help
Thursday, July 25, 2015
at 5071 W. Congress Parkway
11:30 am to 1:30 pm
Senator Jacqueline Collins and the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Need
Your HelpJoin them on
Thursday, July 25, 2015
at Chicago State University
9501 South King Drive
5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
The Mass Black Male Graduation
Performers in front, elders in middle,
graduates in back at Metropolitan Apostolic
Black male elementary, high school and
college graduates watch African drummers invoke the spirit of past elders into
Black male graduates listen closely for
advice and tips to success at Metropolitan Apostolic
Graduates were from elementary, high
schools, and colleges throughout Chicago.
Elder Attorney Keynote Speaker James
Montgomery extends a hand of help and hope to the young
Young Warrior Speaker Jasiri X, Hip Hop
Artist and Activist from Pittsburgh, inspires graduates to work for
These are some of the top Black male
readers in the country (Reading Warriors) who were awarded large cash prizes for
reading well--not basketball, not sports, not dancing or rapping. First place
was $250.00. Nine large cash awards were presented to
There was no news coverage of
this event even though we sent five media advisories to every television
station, many radio stations, and all the major newspapers in Chicago. If one
of our boys had started shooting in the church, we would have led on the 10:00
pm national news! But because we were celebrating the kind of achievement that
can turn around the violence, poor education and economic despair in the Black
community, it seemed that no one was interested. Even Black people were not
interested. Two day earlier, 2 million people turned out to cheer on the Black
Hawks. We seem to have our priorities straight! - Phillip Jackson, The Black
(All photos by Billy Montgomery and
Million Man March 2015
Skills Are Key To Success. But What Should We Call Them?
May 28, 2015
More and more people in education
agree on the importance of learning stuff other than academics. But no one
agrees on what to call that "stuff".
There are least seven major
overlapping terms in play. New ones are being coined all the time. This
bagginess bugs me, as a member of the education media. It bugs researchers and
"Basically we're trying to
explain student success educationally or in the labor market with skills not
directly measured by standardized tests," says Martin West, at the Harvard
Graduate School of Education. "The problem is, you go to meetings and everyone
spends the first two hours complaining and arguing about semantics."
West studies what he calls
"non-cognitive skills." Although he's not completely happy with that term.
The problem isn't just semantic,
argues Laura Bornfreund, deputy director of the education policy program at the
New America Foundation. She wrote a paper on what she called
"Skills for Success," since she didn't like any of these other terms. "There's a
lot of different terms floating around but also a lack of agreement on what
really is most important to students."
As Noah Webster, the great
American lexicographer and educator, put it back in 1788,"The virtues of men are
of more consequence to society than their abilities; and for this reason,
the heart should be cultivated with more assiduity than the head."
Yet he didn't come up with a good
name, either. So, in Webster's tradition, here's a short glossary of terms that
are being used for that cultivation of the heart. Vote for your favorite in the
comments - or propose a new one.
Poor, the Graduation Gap Is Even Wider Than the Enrollment Gap
June 2, 2015
Rich and poor students don't merely enroll in
college at different rates; they also complete
it at different rates. The graduation gap is even wider than the enrollment
In 2002, researchers with the
National Center for Education Statistics started tracking a cohort of 15,000
high school sophomores. The project, called the Education Longitudinal Study, recorded
information about the students' academic achievement, college entry, work
history and college graduation. A recent publication examines the
completed education of these young people, who are now in their late 20s.
The study divided students into
four equally sized groups, or quartiles, depending on their parents' education,
income and occupation. The students in the lowest quartile had parents with the
lowest income and education, more likely to work in unskilled jobs.
Those in the highest quartile had
parents with the highest income and education, those more likely to be
professionals or managers.
In both groups, most of the
teenagers had high hopes for college.
Over all, more than 70 percent of sophomores
planned to earn a bachelor's degree. In the top quartile, 87 percent expected to
get at least a bachelor's, with 24 percent aiming for an advanced degree.
In the bottom quartile, 58
percent of students expected to get at least a bachelor's degree and 12 percent
to go on to graduate school.
Thirteen years later, we can see
who achieved their goals.
Among the participants from the
most disadvantaged families, just 14 percent had earned a bachelor's degree.
That is, one out of four of the
disadvantaged students who had hoped to get a bachelor's had done so. Among
those from the most advantaged families, 60 percent had earned a bachelor's,
about two-thirds of those who had planned to.
Seeing these numbers, some
readers may wonder whether the poor children were simply overconfident, with
aspirations outstripping their academic skills. Maybe the low-income children
weren't completing college because they were not able.