Wednesday, February 25, 2015

COMMIT! report to the community

Below you'll be able to read my brief remarks yesterday to the community reporting session hosted by COMMIT!.

The Commit! Partnership helps drive student achievement throughout Dallas County from cradle to career by leveraging data, community expertise and collaboration, to measure what matters, identify best practices and spread what works. 

I was glad to be asked to say a few words about what I consider to be our number one challenge in Dallas and our region. 
COMMIT! Update
February 24, 2015
·         Impressed by and grateful for this public show of concern and commitment to see our children receive the best in education across the region
·         My 5-minute assignment is a perfect length:  you’ll likely leave here with “data overload”—so, I’ll be easy on you
·         Here’s the deal:
1.       Poverty is the biggest challenge/problem/obstacle facing us and the education of our children
2.       Poverty is pervasive:  almost 9 of 10 DISD students receive free and reduced meals at school; if we look at the county public schools that number is 3 of 4 students
3.       Poverty is growing:  between 2000 and 2012 the population of the city of Dallas grew by a modest 5%; while for the same period the number of us trapped in poverty grew by 41%!
4.       Poverty is deepening:  during that same time frame the number of census tracts experiencing concentrated poverty almost doubled.
5.       Our poverty problem calls for new imagination as to how to use schools to strengthen entire families/neighborhoodsrelationally, intellectually, financially, skillfully, spiritually & politically
New imagination as to how to regard one another with respect, value, love and commitment.

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