Archive for August 29th, 2014


August 29, 2014–Hear-Men-and-Fathers-from-Across-America-Talk-About-the-Million-Father-March–Men-an.html?soid=1101449490165&aid=fBNnGeBJeFw Att end One of the Best Back-to-School Parades in America
The 2014
Million Father March Parade
Saturday, August 30, 2014, 11:00 am
45th to 51st and Cottage Grove
Chicago, Illinois

Call 773.285.9600 for more information.
On Labor Day
September 1, 2014
6:00 am to 9:00 am CST
Tune in to WVON 1690-AM to hear
Men and women from all parts of America talk about the
Million Father March 2014
in their city and
the value of fathers in the lives
of their children

including a special interview with
Principal Kimberly Henderson
of Mollison Elementary School
Chicago, Illinois
as she discusses the exciting lessons and opportunities of the 2014-2015 school year for her students, parents and community
Monday, September 1, 2014
6:00 am central time
On WVON -1690 AM

Join us at 7:00 am Eastern; 6:00 am Central; 5:00 am Mountain; 4:00 am Pacific; 3:00 am Alaskan; 2:00 am Hawaiian. Call-In number at 773-591-1690
Listen to The Black Star Project’s
Internationally Acclaimed Radio Program
The Parent Revolution
Every Saturday on WVON 1690AM

Click Here to Tune In.
The Black Star Project thanks the Board of Directors of The Field Foundation of Illinois, the Board of Directors of Woods Fund of Chicago, Illinois State Senator Jacqueline Collins, Illinois State Senator Kimberly A. Lightford, Chicago Alderman Will Burns and Melody Spann Cooper of WVON for their generous support for our parenting programs. Fathers and Men!
Our Children Need You!

To meet The Black Star Project at Mollison Elementary School on Tuesday Morning at 8:10 am, September 2, 2014, at 4415 South King Drive, Chicago, Illinois, to welcome back the students of Mollison and to sign up to give 10 hours of service to our children this school year. Please call 773.285.9600 to let us know that you will be with us.
CDC Study Shatters Myth
about Black Fathers

Stacy M. Brown
August 13, 2014

(NNPA) – Terrence Morgan has heard the stories over and over. Black men are absent from their children’s lives. An African American woman stands more likely to be a single mom than any other race.
Morgan, 33, who has two sons, ages 6 and 4, lives in Southeast next door to a close friend who only sees his child once a week.
“I just couldn’t live peacefully without being active in my sons’ lives,” said Morgan, a medical assistant. “It’s in the inner-cities, all over the news, Black men abandon their children or Black women have to struggle alone. That’s just not me, though,” he said.
A 2012 federal government survey revealed that 15 million American children live in households without fathers; a stark increase over a 1960 study that showed just 11 percent lived in homes without a dad.
However, by most measures, Black fathers have proven to be just as involved with their children as other dads in similar living conditions – or more so – according to the latest study released in July by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics in Atlanta.
In fact, in its coverage of the study, the Los Angeles Times noted that the results, “defy stereotypes about black fatherhood,” because CDC officials found that African American dads are more involved with their children on a daily basis than fathers from any other racial group.
“Yes, there still are too many broken homes and too many fathers not living with their children, especially in the Black community. But it’s high time to put this myth about the absent Black father to rest.”
“In part, because I saw other fathers engaging their kids the same way.”
The CDC’s report further revealed that nearly half of Black fathers living apart from their young children said they played with them at least several times a week, 42 percent said they fed or dined with them that frequently, and 41 percent said they bathed, diapered or helped dress them as often – rates on par with or higher than those of other men living apart from their children.
Click Here to read Full Story

At the end of the day, the only thing Rochester does well is reinforce a socioeconomic caste system that keeps young black men and women at the bottom. Thanks to the district, they will have a good chance of being known to the criminal justice system.
By Michael Holzman
August 26, 2014

Michael Holzman
The Rochester City School District enrolls just under 30,000 students, 61 percent of whom are African American and 25 percent of whom are Latino. [There are approximate 10,000 school-aged white residents of the city, two-thirds of these are not enrolled in the city’s public schools.] Eighty-five percent of the district’s students are listed as “economically disadvantaged.”
In 2012-13 there were approximately twice as many students enrolled in ninth grade as in 12th grade because of a “gate” assessment at ninth grade.
This high ninth grade enrollment is common among schools and districts serving children living in poverty, nearly unknown in wealthy communities. The large number of children spending more than one year in ninth grade can both be attributed to a lack of academic achievement in earlier years and be said to be a factor leading to the absence of a high school diploma four years later.
In the 2011-12 school year, the turnover rate of teachers with fewer than five years of experience was 51 percent. The turnover rate of all teachers was 28 percent, double the state-wide average. In a typical Rochester school, comparatively few teachers are highly educated, few teachers new to teaching are in the classroom after their second year, few of any teachers after their fourth year.
Statewide, 31 percent of New York students reach the National Assessment of Educational Progress Proficient (grade level) status in eighth grade reading, and four percent reach the Advanced level. White students score at Proficient or above 46 percent of the time; black New York State students reach Proficient or above 18 percent of the time. The New York State Department of Education believes that the new Common Core tests begun in 2013 are now aligned with NAEP.
In the 2014 administration of these tests, 5.7 percent of all Rochester eighth grade students scored at grade level in reading, level 3 or above (up from 5.6 percent the previous year). This was the lowest percentage at grade level of any of the state’s large cities. Among white students, 12 percent reached level 3 and 8 percent reached level 4. Among black students, four percent reached level 3 and none reached level 4 (due to rounding, the combined levels 3 and 4 totaled five percent). For black male students, 3 percent reached level 3 and none reached level 4. The failure of the district to teach its black students to read and write by eighth grade is nearly total. Monroe High School is one of Rochester’s dropout factories.
It appears likely that only about one or two dozen male black Rochester school district graduates go on to receive Associate’s degrees each year and something on the same order, at most, receive Bachelor’s degrees. If we compare these educational outcomes for African American residents of Rochester to those for White residents of Monroe County (including Rochester) we can see that nearly four times the proportion of the latter as the former have attained education to the Bachelor’s degree level or above and that the proportions reverse for the populations without high school diplomas. It is not too much to say that a college education for Rochester residents is a white privilege.
The Rochester school district brings relatively few of its black students to grade level in reading in eighth grade. It graduates just over a quarter of them. A few dozen earn Associate’s degrees, a relatively few Bachelor’s degrees and above. Without those qualifications their opportunities for successful careers are quite limited, their chances of economic mobility beyond the station in life of their parents scant.
At the end of the day, the only thing Rochester does well is reinforce a socioeconomic caste system that keeps young black men and women at the bottom. Thanks to the district, they will have a good chance of being known to the criminal justice system.
Click Here to Read Full Story

Simeon Electricity Shop
Program Restored
State Senator Jacqueline Collins told CPS officials “if the program was not reinstated they should not come to Springfield asking for more money”.

Simeon Vocational Career Academy Local School Council Meeting By J. Coyden Palmer
August 23, 2014

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) officials announced Wednesday afternoon they will be reinstating the Electricity Shop Program at Simeon Vocational Career Academy after weeks of being under duress from community leaders, Black politicians, students and the Black media. According to the release, CPS will be partnering with Local Union 134, which has committed to offer jobs to students who complete the three-year electricity program at Simeon, the only program of its kind in the District.
“We are looking forward to helping train and recruit the next generation of electricians,” said Terry Allen, Business Manager for IBEW 134. “IBEW is committed to offering employment towards apprenticeship and helping Chicago’s next generation workforce find job security and a path to the middle class.”

In a Crusader exclusive on July 17, the newspaper broke the story when it learned the program had been terminated via the program’s teacher Latisa Kindred. CPS officials said the decision was made by Simeon principal Sheldon House.

“We are grateful for this partnership with IBEW that will provide our students with an opportunity to continue to learn valuable skills,” said CPS CEO Dr. Barbara Byrd-Bennett in a press release.

State Senator Jacqueline Collins, along with State Rep. Mary Flowers, LaShawn Ford and State Senator Donnie Trotter, pushed for the program to be reinstated. Collins told CPS officials if the program was not reinstated they should not come to Springfield asking for more money. She said this situation shows what can happen when citizens, local community news outlets and elected officials work together.

“We’re glad CPS took the advice of the Simeon alumni, students and parents and reinstated the program,” Collins told the Crusader via telephone Wednesday evening. “This is a lesson of what can be accomplished when the community works in conjunction with their legislators for a program that benefits us all.”

Kindred thanked the Crusader for notifying the public what was taking place and believes without the news story last month; the results would have been a lot different. She said she is excited to get back into the classroom and work with her students.

The three-year program will have the capacity to enroll 28 students each year, beginning in a student’s sophomore year. Students enrolled in the program last year are eligible to return. The electricity program is one of more than 40 different Career and Technical Education (CTE) programs, which offers industry-focused coursework for high school students to pursue, in addition to required core courses.

Click Here to Read Full Story

Note: Electricians in IBEW 134 will earn $50.00 per hour in the next three years.
Help Send the Distinguished Gentlemen of Spoken Word to The White House by Clicking Here.

As America struggles with death of several more young Black men by the hands of police in the past week and the death of hundreds of young Black men at the hands of other misguided young Black men, the Distinguished Gentlemen of Spoken Word have risen above America! PICTURES
Top Row – Michael Brown, killed in Ferguson, Missouri; Eric Garner, killed in New York City, New York; and Trayvon Martin, killed in Sanford, Florida. Bottom Row – Jonathan Ferrell, killed in Charlotte, North Carolina; Oscar Grant, killed in Oakland, California; and Jordan Davis, killed in Jacksonville, Florida. ***************************************************************


August 29, 2014

For the Falconets, this victory is personal

AUGUST 26, 2014
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He pressed his head to my bosom. I looked down. I observed some tears rolling down his little cheek as we sat on the sofa watching Nigeria engage Germany in a game of skills and wits. Then, he said (as if I did not notice), “Daddy, Germany has scored”. And I replied, “Son, it is ok; there is still some time. It is not over yet”. With a pack of Nigerian and Canadian friends gathered and routing for the Falconets, we kept hope alive. Eventually, after an eventful 120 minutes, the Germans took the gold, and left Nigerians with the silver. Some silvers are more golden. As far as I can say, the Nigerian women team that showcased exceptional talent and indomitable resilience in the just-concluded 2014 FIFA U20 Women World Cup tournament in Canada was the best side throughout and in each game. Many footballers and fans know that victory is not an exclusive entitlement of the better side. It is a combination of many other factors beyond the latter’s control. For the game against the Germans, I would refrain from further remark on the quality of officiating and not play a sore loser. The Nigerian young women and their coaching crew are anything but losers. They are champions in heart, skill and conduct. When juxtaposed with the performance of the Super Eagles in the June 2014 World Cup in Brazil, the Falconets were simply exemplary, unassuming, courageous and adventurous. And it paid off, big time, each time, with convincing victories.

I am compelled to seize the moment to reflect on the ramifications of the victory of the Falconets. Here in Canada, their presence has been a powerful symbol of positive press and social mobilisation among Nigerians in the Diaspora, their Canadian spouses, friends and their children; and indeed the soccer-loving world. No amount of government sponsored self-serving image laundering could accomplish what the Falconets did for Nigeria within so short a time, and with astounding credibility. From Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Alberta and Quebec, despite the comparative poor traction that women football currently garners, the Diaspora Nigerians and Africans rallied around the Falconets as they came close to the domains. Nigerians remained loudest voices in support of their team, even in sparsely occupied stadia across Canada. As the tournament progressed and the Falconets came into solid reckoning, there was little effort required for mobilisation and support.

Canada is a hockey nation, and not a football-playing nation. But it has a strong profile in women football. When the Canadian side was edged out by Germany, it was then not a tough call where a unified loyalty should lie for Nigerian-Canadian families, who may have been split temporarily. The Falconets enjoyed undivided goodwill for the most part when Canada dropped out of contention. But it is presumptuous to claim that football has no traction in Canada. For both male and female football, a lot is going on in Canada. A careful observation through my personal network reveals that Canadian youths of Nigerian ancestry have a powerful presence in the football revolution that is gradually sweeping across the nook and cranny of the exceptionally vast country of Canada. So, the month-long presence and extraordinary showing of the Falconets in Canada was a powerful symbol of inspiration to a section of Nigerian youths from Toronto, Halifax, Calgary, Vancouver, Ottawa, Montreal and elsewhere. In a way, the Falconets affirmed Nigerians’ undeniable credentials at home and in the Diaspora as Africa’s football powerhouse.

The solid performance of the Falconets could not have come at a better time. Before that victory, many Nigerians in Canada struggled to convince their curious and innocent interrogators that the experience of the over 200 abducted Chibok girls was not the norm. As much as the abduction was symptomatic of deviant and perverted religious extremism, most unknowing Canadians needed better evidence of how Nigeria treats its young female population. Thanks to the Falconets. This victory goes to remind us about the plight of the Chibok girls. It should help to re-fuel the #BringBackOurGirls campaigns that seem to have lost steam. Any of the Chibok girls could well have been in the line for the glorious expedition in victory and courage that the Falconets displayed in Canada for the whole world as worthy bearers of Nigerian banner; not as Boko Haram sex slaves.

While the tournament was going on, the Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa (including Nigeria) attempted to becloud the gallant strides of the Falconets. Nigeria was again an ugly focus of unpleasant news. Canadian media was awash with reportage of quarantined suspected Ebola infected Nigerian returnees to Canada and elsewhere in the United States and Europe. It is telling to observe how the media would insist upon calling folk out as Nigerians when the news is negative while turning a blind eye to the “victims”’ other citizenships which are perhaps most appropriate in the given circumstance. Despite the pervasive trend in what I call immigration racism of the Ebola outbreak, the Falconets kept a positive media spotlight on Nigeria, which climaxed on Sunday, August 24, 2014, when they took the Golden Silver. It was a delight to be a witness to their extraordinary character and courage as a team, including the coaching crew. Their success reflects the enormous possibilities that lie within Nigeria’s national horizon despite our pathological inclination to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory as a sage once observed.

On a more personal note, my little one overcame his tears and smiled along when he saw Nigerian, French and German women football players being called out for individual awards. I told him that they were all winners and that’s part of the reason we call football the beautiful game. Then, he asked me, “Who’s that man in a hat and suit with a long scarf?” I replied: “His name is Chief Ojo Maduekwe. He is Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Canada”. It was a positive optics, even though our President was in Germany when the Falconets took the Golden Silver in a stiff contest against the Germans. I wondered what he was doing that hour; how he felt.

•Oguamanam is a Law Professor, University of Ottawa, Canada. @chidi_oguamanam

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