Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Legislative Weekend Shines Spotlight on Nation's Education Emergency. (Noteworthy News: The Latest News from across the Country)

Magazine article Black Issues in Higher Education

Legislative Weekend Shines Spotlight on Nation's Education Emergency. (Noteworthy News: The Latest News from across the Country)

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON

Education advocates were put on alert last month at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's annual legislative weekend in Washington as Rep. Major Owens, D-N.Y., declared an "education emergency" in America, more specifically in the African American community.

"Examined within the context of the overall terrorism-provoked national security emergency, education does not diminish, but instead mushrooms as a national priority," said Owens, chairman of the CBC's Education Braintrust. "Mounting a `war' against a very well-educated terrorist enemy requires a well-educated populace."

Much of the weekend's activities were focused on efforts to increase minority representation in the fields of science, mathematics and technology, as well as initiatives aimed at closing the "digital divide."

Issue forums featured panels on high-stakes testing, parental involvement and collaborative learning.

During one of the weekend forums, Dr. Andre Hornsby, superintendent of New York's public schools and others, urged caucus attendees to ensure that high-stakes tests are used to improve public schools, not to punish students and teachers. Actor Danny Glover also was on hand, serving as a spokesman for the Algebra Project and encouraging caucus attendees to support programs that excite Black youngsters about math and science. Glover, who is dyslexic, told how his own proficiency for mathematics kept him turned on to school and eventually resulted in his earning a bachelor's in economics.

In another Friday session, Michael Edmonds, an executive with computer software firm Discreet, demonstrated a new teaching tool that complements instruction in history, current events, government and communications by enabling students to hold virtual conversations via computer with important public figures. The demonstration featured a virtual version of Owens.

The caucus weekend brought local and national organizations together to share their mutual 'agendas as well as to renew existing partnerships and forge new ones.

Dr. Ronnie Lowenstein, president of the Education Technology Think Tank (ET3), welcomed the chance to rub shoulders with diverse stakeholders of education.

"Technology and telecommunications are the tools of transformation, says Lowenstein. "But private and public partnership development is the strategy for that transformation. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.