April Stogner is a lifelong Bronzeville resident, mother of three, grandmother three. Education leader and advocate, proud KOCO leader and member of the MidSouth Education Association.
I heard the interview that was done on public radio. It felt like we were sitting on the porch in rocking chairs and you were speaking directly to me. You mentioned brown and black kids a couple of times in the interview, but April, you were speaking for EVERY child in this country; black, brown, tan, yellow, white, red, pink or blue! This nation has lost it’s priorities, taking away a sense of community for ALL children, urban, suburban and rural alike. We DO need to keep our community schools and we need to reduce the number of kids in those schools. Moving to a model of packing every child into one building causes each one to get lost in the system and hinders our teachers from developing true relationships with the kids and their families. Your mayor mentioned that they were doing this in order to achieve the goals set for every child. He did NOT clarify what those goals are, but I would be willing to bet that they are NOT the same goals you and I have set!
I am so proud of you for what you are standing for, developing the character and ability in our children. Your voice needs to be heard as a voice that speaks for every child in every school district in this country. I applaud your perseverance and your integrity and pray that your voice be heard. Keep fighting, lean on those around you and accept help as it is offered! May God give you strength….
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Jitu Brown is the epitome of a lover of all children and the belief that all children deserve a world-class education in their community. He has mentored thousands of young people in Bronzeville and beyond for the last 22 years and is a the director of the Journey for Justice Alliance and lifelong member and leader with KOCO. Jitu has served on Dyett’s Local School Council since 2003 and is a member of the Coalition to Revitalize Dyett and committed hundreds of thousands of hours on the School Alignment Process and the Bronzeville Global Achievers Village that eventually became the Dyett Global Leadership & Green Technology Plan.
Marc Kaplan is a long-time organizer, Board member and leader at Northside Action for Justice. Parent, husband, local school council member at Uplift High School in Uptown. Marc has been involved in organizing against gentrification and for people’ s power in Uptown and around the city since 1972.
Nelson Soza is a lifelong activist and organizer that has worked in all communities for justice. Husband and father of three and is the the Executive Director of Pilsen Alliance.
Dyett Global Leadership & Green Technology HS