Ms. Nancy’s last Day

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Ms. Nancy, the chef from Cornell University ran an eight week program at the center, teaching the children how to eat and cook healthy. I enjoyed working with her because she never allowed me to apologize for the children and their sinful ways!

Don’t worry, Miss Lilly, she would say when I wanted to apologized for the children making a huge mess or talking while she was trying to teach, I know they are children and they just want play at this point.

At the end of every day, she would have a short debrief with me and assure me that my children were good.  Which always made me feel great. She never showed any signs of being stressed out.

She also congratulated my staff. They are very helpful, Ms. Lilly, especially that tall one, Ms. Murray.

The children are still cooking every Tuesday and better yet, cooking her recipes, with Ms. Murray.

keynote speaker, Pedro Antonio Noguera has on jeans

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Last month I attended Columbia University’s Diversity in Research and Practice Conference. The following are notes I took and observations I made.

Train Stop Observation: The 137th City College Stop on the one train looks different from Columbia University’s Stop.

A few notes to self about Conferences:

Always bring extra money. Something is always for sell. Dress up a little bit. All the ladies have on make- up and new hair. Find a way to wear my hair and hats- professionally.

Wait- the keynote speaker, Pedro Antonio Noguera has on jeans. Be myself. Wear what I want.

Notes taken from the Keynote:

How do we bridge the gap?

Are we doing work that is relevant?

We shouldn’t be content with only advancing ourselves.

“Fear in the academy that somehow your work is not scholarly enough”

Challenge: Use the privilege position.

What are we doing to schools in the name of achievement?

Read more about the Atlanta Cheating Scandal.

Schools are lacking art, music and recess and are being given tests.

Holding teachers accountable and not holding Christie and Cuomo accountable.

In order to understand what’s happening in schools, we have to understand what’s happening outside of schools.

Watch the movie: Menace to Society

How do we make Education relevant to all?

Racial Disparities are the same as the achievement gap (the first time I heard someone refer to the gap as the ‘so called achievement gap’)

What makes it hard for children of color to get a decent education?

Make sure your work is timely and not just about you. Talk to the public. Don’t avoid other’s theories and ideas.

Theory and Ideas MATTER.

Achievement Gap: Inequality is driving the achievement gap.  Studies showed that the child would succeed by the education and income of their parents- particularly the mother.

How come the allocation gap is not a part of the problem? Why do we give more money to rich schools?

Pay attention to the relationship between the structure and the culture of the school. Each school is different.

Look up Following Book: The Declining Significance of Race by Wilson

Cultural changes lead to cultural consequences.

Americans ignore structure but structure creates our society.

Simplistic narrative- what are these institutions saying? Is the kid the problem?  Are teachers the problem?

There are many schools in the country that are high achieving all black schools. Look at Medgar Evers Prep.

Engage Ideas, not run away from ideas you don’t like.

Look up following article: Dyson vs Cornel

How do you create schools where kids who come from a mixed background succeed?

If we only study ourselves, then who will focus on the bigger issues like schools and reform? Don’t be content on studying one’s self.

Study work that is relevant to schools- not just submitting papers.

Keep thinking about how you would do work that would make a difference. Use your position to speak out about injustices.

Black lives Matter- not just a protest. Whose democracy is in jeopardy? Look at the holist of the child. Conductive approach.

Go into research without knowing the answer

Cornell

This is Cornell. Look at his outfit.

He told me he is originally from North Carolina.

He came to New York in 1962 after he got into a little trouble. He lived upstate for a while…I automatically thought jail because of the way he said it: They sent me upstate and when I got out my Mom helped me get a small place in the Bronx. Now I live in Harlem.