06-19-2018  1:38 am      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

CareOregon Awards $250,000 for Housing Projects

Recipients include Rogue Retreat, Bridges to Change, Luke Dorf, Transition Projects and Bridge Meadows ...

The Honorable Willie L. Brown to Receive NAACP Spingarn Medal

The award recognizes Brown’s lifelong commitment to the community, equality and civil rights ...

Watching Oprah: The Oprah Winfrey Show and American Culture

New Smithsonian exhibit looks at how Oprah Winfrey shaped American culture and vice versa ...

Prosecutor: Oregon man justified in shooting near hotel

BEND, Ore. (AP) — A heavy equipment operator was legally justified when he shot and wounded a knife-wielding man last month outside an Oregon hotel, a prosecutor said Monday.However, Robert Garris was foolish to appoint himself "sheriff of the Days Inn" and initiate a confrontation with the...

Some forest trails remain closed long after 2017 wildfire

IDANHA, Ore. (AP) — Some trails in Oregon's Willamette National Forest remain closed because of damage from a wildfire that scorched the area last year.The Whitewater Trail into the Jefferson Park area remains closed. Other trails, including some in the Fall Creek area near Eugene, also are...

Spokane man convicted in 2015 deadly shooting

MOSES LAKE, Wash. (AP) — A Spokane man has been convicted of killing a Moses Lake teenager during a 2015 robbery attempt.The Columbia Basin Herald reports Jeremiah Smith was found guilty of first-degree murder, first-degree burglary, first-degree assault and first-degree unlawful possession...

Police seize 2,500 marijuana plants from 6 Tacoma homes

TACOMA, Wash. (AP) — Authorities say eight people have been arrested after police searched six Tacoma houses connected to an illegal marijuana growing operation.The News Tribune reports authorities seized at least 2,500 marijuana plants from the properties that police searched Monday...

OPINION

What Happened? Assessing the Singapore Summit

For all its weaknesses, we are better off having had the summit than not ...

Redlining Settlement Fails to Provide Strong Penalties

A recent settlement of a federal redlining lawsuit is yet another sign that justice is still being denied ...

5 Lessons on Peace I Learned from My Cat Soleil

Dr. Jasmine Streeter takes some cues on comfort from her cat ...

Research Suggests Suicides By Racial and Ethnic Minorities are Undercounted

Sociologist Dr. Kimya Dennis describes barriers to culturally-specific suicide research and treatment ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Border separations ripple through midterm campaigns

Wrenching scenes of migrant children being separated from their parents at the southern border are roiling campaigns ahead of midterm elections, emboldening Democrats on the often-fraught issue of immigration while forcing an increasing number of Republicans to break from President Donald Trump on...

City where many slaves entered US to apologize for slavery

CHARLESTON, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina city where almost half of all the slaves brought to the United States first set foot on American soil is ready to apologize for its role in the slave trade.The resolution expected to be passed by the Charleston City Council on Tuesday offers a...

School honoring Confederate general to be renamed for Obama

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A Virginia city is rebranding its only school named after a Confederate general to honor the United States' first black president.The Richmond Times-Dispatch reports the Richmond School Board voted 6-1 Monday to rename J.E.B. Stuart Elementary School to Barack Obama...

ENTERTAINMENT

List of winners from the 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — Winners of the MTV Movie & TV Awards, presented Saturday at Barker Hanger in Santa Monica, California:Movie of the year: "Black Panther"Actor in a Movie: Chadwick Boseman, "Black Panther"Show of the Year: "Stranger Things"Actor in a Show: Millie Bobby Brown,...

In 'Jurassic World,' a dino-sized animal-rights parable

NEW YORK (AP) — The dinosaurs of "Jurassic Park" are many things. They are special-effects wonders. They are unruly house guests. And they are some of the biggest, most foot-stomping metaphors around.Since Steven Spielberg's 1993 original, the dinos of "Jurassic Park" — many of them...

Immigration detention policy becomes major issue in media

NEW YORK (AP) — In a phone conversation with her executive producer over the weekend, "CBS This Morning" anchor Gayle King wondered if there wasn't more the network could do on the story of children being separated from parents through the Trump administration's "zero tolerance" immigration...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

On a big night for 'Panther,' Boseman honors real-life hero

SANTA MONICA, Calif. (AP) — The MTV Movie & TV Awards gave "Black Panther" its first taste of awards...

US could back 1st pot-derived medicine, and some are worried

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — A British pharmaceutical company is getting closer to a decision on whether...

Looking for signs of global warming? It's all around you

GOTHIC, Colo. (AP) — David Inouye is an accidental climate scientist.More than 40 years ago, the University...

Engine catches fire on plane with Saudi WCup team, none hurt

MOSCOW (AP) — Officials say an engine of a Russian plane carrying the Saudi Arabian soccer team to a World...

3 men die of 6 wounded in southern Sweden drive-by shooting

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — Three of the six men who were injured in a drive-by shooting in the center of...

In Mexico, longtime foes 'AMLO' and elite getting pragmatic

MEXICO CITY (AP) — On the campaign trail, presidential front-runner Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has railed...

By Arashi Young | The Skanner News

There is a new Black student success plan being created by the Oregon Department of Education, community based organizations, teachers and parents.

The landmark plan focuses on closing the achievement gap for African American students -- and most importantly, it is funded. Around $ 3 million will be used to plan and fund grants for Black student success initiatives.

Markisha Smith, an education equity program specialist with the Oregon Department of Education said this endeavor is a way to bring together the extensive community knowledge of Black students’ needs with institutional funding.

“We know works well… we know what works for our kids and it’s a matter of putting resources behind that and believing that the traditional way in which we do things is not necessarily the only way that we can do things,” Smith said.

The plan and funding come from the Oregon State legislature House Bill 2016 which was signed into law by Governor Kate Brown on July 1, 2015.

It was signed amidst a tense national conversation about race as South Carolina debated the removal of the Confederate flag after the horrific Charleston church shooting committed by Dylann Roof.

The bill directs the Oregon Department of Education to create and implement a statewide education plan for Black students. To this end, ODE has created a Black student success plan advisory group and has hired Education Program Specialist Kendra Hughes to coordinate these efforts.

Smith said the advisory group is consists of a mix of individuals who are dedicated to education; from Pre-K through higher Ed. Advisory group members include community advocates Ron Herndon from Albina Head Start, Tony Hopson with Self Enhancement, Inc., Nkenge Harmon Johnson of the Urban League of Portland and Charles McGee from the Black Parent Initiative.

Smith said the advisory group has a wealth of insight from working for Black students for many years.

“We've got good folks behind this who are really driving the conversation and making those key recommendations,” Smith said. “They are doing that based on research, based on experience; I think that is a game-changer.”

A full list of advisory group members can be found here.

The advisory group has been meeting about once a month since October 2015. In April the group will deliver the plan to the legislature and begin the grant proposal process. There will be a request for proposals from education and community based organizations.

Smith said after the grants have been approved the funding will be available for some summer activities and programs that will start in the fall 2016 school year.

Right now, the $ 3 million investment is for one year of funding. Smith said the group will be looking to fund programs that are evidence-based and results oriented. The funding provides an opportunity to prove to the legislature that backing black education can close the achievement gap.

If the 2016 school year shows good results, the advisory group can make the case for continued investment in black student success.

Ron Herndon, who is a part of the advisory group, said there are a lot of knowledgeable people making recommendations and he believes the end product will be good, but he is concerned the plan wouldn’t be enacted.

“The big question is ‘What happens with the work when the committee is finished?’, there have been studies done for the last 200 years regarding the condition of Black people in this country and most of them end up gathering dust on someone's shelf,” Herndon said. “If you took all these reports and stacked them up, it would be higher than the Empire State Building.”

Herndon would like to see close monitoring of the implementation of the plan and to see results that change local and state policies.

The group will use Oregon Department of Education data to track progress. They will look at things like graduation rates, absenteeism, attendance and disproportionate discipline. They will also look further into culturally responsive curriculum and teaching practices as well as investing in early learning programs.

Smith said House Bill 2016 goes beyond legislative equity policy that gives only a mention to the needs of the underserved, instead of planning and financing to change the outcomes. She calls this investment and prioritization of Black students in Oregon a “historic moment”.

“It is … specifically calling out what needs to happen for African American and Black Students in the state to be successful --  and ways in which we can go about that -- and ways in which we can invest in that,” Smith said.

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