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Sunday, September 25, 2011

salt that tenderizes

We must  live a flavorful life. Be the salt that tenderizes the toughest of souls and adds bold, spicy, full flavor to all. We must get in where we fit in and not be the vocal complainer who does nothing but add noise to the room. We must be bold, stand tall, rise up, lead and let our light shine through. As we do and live this way, we  help our children do the same. We must let our spirit guide us so we are able to help others find their light and understand who they are, be proud of themselves and love themselves and each other.  The right amount of salt and light is the balance of a beautiful full happy life.

Rondo Area Meeting Gives Voices To Community

Sonia Sanchez & Dr. Julianne Malveaux

The new school year will begin in a couple of weeks, and a local group of parents are asking what it will take to provide excellent education for every child in every neighborhood.
Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC) held an open discussion Saturday, August 13, at Rondo Library in St. Paul. According to NOC organizer Kerry Felder, it was the first in a series of meetings scheduled in the next couple of months.
“The purpose [of Saturday’s meeting] is to develop a conversation” on the importance of good schools for all, said Victoria Balko, who lives in North Minneapolis and is a mother of one. Many who attended the 90-minute morning session expressed their concerns about the present state of education.
Schools should help all children adjust to life, believes Zong Choua Thao, who lives on St. Paul’s East side.
Brian Smith is a father of two high schoolers and a pre-schooler. “I’ve been involved in my children’s education since the beginning,” he noted, adding that other parents who started out the same but grew frustrated with the attitudes of some educators and administrators toward Black parents who feel “devalued and ignored so much.”
A grandmother told of her experience with school officials in not adequately meeting her grandchild’s educational needs, which resulted in her asking for an emergency transfer to another school. She added that a “teacher bond” with children is necessary for classroom success.
Others complained of uneven handling of discipline, especially when it comes to Black students and other students of color. “Look at the suspension rate, and you can see the unfairness of the Black children versus the White children,” said parent Shatona Groves, who attributed this to a lack of cultural competency among teachers.
“These teachers aren’t teaching,” noted Tonia Collins, a substitute teacher. She strongly supports the idea that more Black teachers should be hired. “I’m hoping that this is going in the right direction, that they will start looking at teachers of color,” Collins pointed out. “If you look around the school and everyone is White, and no one looks like you, how can you relate.”
Collins also believes that a maximum of 25 students per classroom is best, and that each classroom has a teacher’s aide as well.
However, famed educator Mahmoud El-Kati told the group that too much talk is being spent discussing large class sizes and poor test scores as prime reasons why schools aren’t working for our children. “I don’t agree on what you’re talking about,” he pointed out. “Someone’s got to question the American ideology. The system is defining that White people are smarter than Black people. We got to change this fundamental basis because it produces false consciousness.”
Felder added that El-Kati’s comments were very timely. “I’m glad of what he said,” she admitted afterwards.
“Our goal and intent was to have an honest, engaging conversation,” noted Balko, who is chairperson of the NOC’s education committee.
NOC Executive Director Steve Fletcher said that “real tough questions” must be asked of school officials. “I thought this was a real good meeting,” he surmised. “People came with some real strong experiences… We heard some real passion and want to make positive changes in schools.”
Felder said that NOC contacted 400 persons either in person, by phone or by email over a two-month period earlier this summer and asked questions on education. “We had a 90 percent response rate,” she reported, adding that the survey results are still being tabulated with plans to release its findings at a September 24 meeting.
“I think that the people at NOC have good intentions about what they want for our children, which is a quality education for all of our children,” said Smith. “However, I [am] a little bit reluctant when we are still pushing more for others to treat us more fairly. I think that the primary consideration should be to find the resources to educate and take care of our own children in our own school environment.
“We should begin to educate our own children and get the results that we want as opposed to continuing to look to others to do that for us,” he concludes.

Charles Hallman welcomes reader responses to

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

mother lion

Being a parent is more than a weekly check in. Or a monthly check in. My son is blessed to have a full time mother who is dedicated fully to him since the day I realized I was carrying him. He is blessed to have a family full of cousins, aunts and grandma who loves him so. along with extended family and friends who will be there along the way. Sadly his dad is not as connected as he should be.  I as a mother am over the excuses. I love the man, we were together for many years, a marriage without paper. I understand and will be his friend until the end but in terms of what our son needs, he is failing truthfully in deed. I have requested a big brother for him and am hopeful a beautiful black strong man will be placed in his life to develop the relationship that he deserves at this point. My son is a beautiful human being, I love him with every fiber I have and thank god daily for blessing me with him. We have begun the year with cub scouts. I am parent volunteer leader. Joining this group brings mixed feelings for me, as the boy scouts bring about fear in me due to fear of inappropriate relations. This is a fear of mine and that is why I am the volunteer parent who is co leader with the group but I also want him to grow in adult male relationships without mom overseeing every piece. Building strong relationships with other boys and men is extremely important, but I am scared of the unknown, so I, at this point must be involved at every level to insure his safety. I am unsure if other parents feel the same protection for their kids but I am a lionist who will slay the mightiest giant for my child and protect along the way to ensure his safety.


Parents! When your teenage and adult children are on Bullshit as you say, Don't wonder why? If they were fed Bullshit from the start, continued to be fed bullshit, lead in the ways of bullshit, saw bullshit daily in their home environment and in the community in which they live and was not given any other food variety and only expectation was what was laid, what the  hell you mad for, shit you did it. You and your Bullshit  laid the foundation for that shit to grow. Don't be mad now, don't point you finger and say you on b.s. they just turn around and say,bullshit.

Stop Excusing Our Young Men

Stop Excusing Our Young Men

Mothers we must stop making excuses for our son's. We must teach them to take responsibility for themselves. If we don't they will grow up to be irresponsible adults who make excuses for why they are not as successful as they could be. Expectations for our boys should be set high. Why? because they can achieve them. If we set low expectations they will meet those expectations and never exceed them. We are doing an injustice to our boys if we don't expect the best for them.We must encourage them, love them, teach them and expect nothing but the best and let them know excuses are not acceptable. In order for them to achieve the highest expectations, we must teach them, give them the foundation, tools, knowledge, self esteem and guide them on the pathway to personal success so they can achieve and hold them responsible for their choices and place. WE must love our son's! Not make excuses for them. Do you want your son who is grown up 35 still living in your home?

Fact Sheet: Outcomes for Young, Black Men

Fact Sheet: Outcomes for Young, Black Men

Monday, September 12, 2011

CDF Cradle to Prison Pipeline® Initiative Slideshow

Five year old girl arrested.

School to Prison pipeline

School-To-Prison Pipeline

watch this video, thoughts?

Private Prisons in a Wider Context (part 1 of 2)

CCA listen people

Colorado prison program teaches inmates renewable energy job skills for a greener life on the outside -

Colorado prison program teaches inmates renewable energy job skills for a greener life on the outside -
School to prison pipeline video watch here.
Children being treated like criminals for being kids!
Children being arrested for child activities.

Colorado prison program teaches inmates renewable energy job skills for a greener life on the outside -

Colorado prison program teaches inmates renewable energy job skills for a greener life on the outside -
Listen To Angela Davis