The October Parents’ Council meeting was held virtually on Oct. 21, 2020. A variety of topics filled this meeting’s agenda.
Below is a short summary of those topics:
Angela Jones, Co-Chair of the Parents’ Council, led the representatives in an information filled discussion related to school activities. School representatives shared a variety of activities and supports being held at schools that support the entire school community. We plan to gather up those ideas to share as part of our push for advocacy.
Byron Johns, Chair of the Parents’ Council, reminds us that school representatives should ask for contact information of African American parents at his/her school for the purpose of communication. An agreement between the NAACP and MCPS has been approved for school representatives to receive this information. If you are an NAACP Parents’ Council representative and are having trouble getting this information, please let Byron or Angela know.
Ms. Jeannie Franklin, Director, MCPS, Division of Consortia Choice and Application Program
For the past several years, Ms. Franklin has presented at Parents’ Council meetings in efforts to share information related to Choice programs of MCPS.
Ms. Lisa Harris, ABLE –Advancing Black Lives in Education, Inc. (ABLE)
The effects of the Coronavirus have been far-ranging but have disproportionately affected Black families in all aspects of life, including education. ABLE was formed out of concern that the already=existing disparities that exist in Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) not be further exacerbated in a virtual learning environment. ABLE is determined that all of our children must absolutely thrive in this new learning environment. Our focus is on assessing the needs of Black students and parents and on responding accordingly to ensure and strengthen our children’s engagement and achievement during this unprecedented time. We are committed to being a force – a listening ear, a squeaky wheel, a source of information, and a provider of resources. We are in the process of building a cadre of tutors to provide supplemental support to students and are also exploring the possibility of small learning pods. We also expect to provide some resources focused on the social and emotional health of students and parents. Finally, we are passionate about making space for Black families to share experiences, to seek answers, and to support each other.
We look forward to opportunities to partner with the NAACP-Parents’ Council and representatives to reach as many Black families as possible and invite you to connect with us by phone (301-807-6584) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org). We also have a closed, private Facebook group. Search for “Advancing Black Lives (in) Education – ABLE” and request to be added, and one of the administrators will add you soon thereafter. We are ABLE!
Byron Johns shared updates related to the Equity Hubs. This has been a very successful program that supports student achievement. Students attend their virtual classes from a supervised location in an MCPS elementary school. There are several Equity Hubs already up and working well with an actual wait list! More equity hubs are scheduled to open in the coming weeks as the final plans for opening MCPS schools is still being planned.