SCUSD Observer

Sacramento, California

Archive for the ‘Black Parallel School Board’ Category

The Black Parallel School Board’s reflections on candidate forum

By the Black Parallel School Board

African Americans under the historical conditions of slavery, segregation and state-sanctioned discrimination had been summarily denied the right to read and write and formally educate themselves and their children. This predicament has had direct impact on every sphere of black existence. One of the most significant blows against this historical problem was the Brown versus the Board of Education decision in 1954, which ruled against segregation in public education. Consequently, America has come to face the fact that receiving a quality public education is a civil right and underpins the very core of our ideals as a nation and the principles and promise for which it stands. As of today, despite our previous efforts, receiving a quality education and closing the achievement gap is the biggest civil rights issue of this century. It goes without saying that as citizens, all, we want to live in a nation as good as its promise and wish to provide the most vulnerable populations with an education worthy of the name.

On May 1st, 2010 an attempt to tackle this problem was made by twenty-two political candidates at Oak Park United Methodist Church. Among these were: Ryan Chin, Candidate for Sacramento City Council, District 7; Leticia Hilbert, Henry Harry, Terre Johnson, Jay Schenirer, and Patrick Kennedy, Candidates for Sacramento City Council Dist. 5; Cliff Cottam for Yes on 17 Campaign, C. T. Weber for No on Prop 14 Campaign, and Candidate for California Lieutenant Governor, Yvonne R. Girard, Candidate for California Lieutenant Governor, Diane Lenning and Grant McMicken, Candidates for CA Superintendent of Public Instruction, Jackie Levy, Candidate for Sacramento County Board of Education, Area 3, Adam Sartain, Lauren Hammond, Kevin McCarty, Roger Dickinson, and Rick Redding,  Candidates for CA Assembly District 9, Erik Smitt, Candidate for 5th Congressional District, Efren Gutierrez, Candidate for Sacramento City Council, District 1, Steve Cohn and Shawn D. Eldredge, Candidates for Sacramento City Council District 3. Each candidate gave an excellent showing.

To read the entire Post Reflections article, please visit BPSB’s website at:


Written by scusdobserver

May 19, 2010 at 8:49 pm

Black Parallel School Board Seeks Council Members

Click here for application information

The Black Parallel School Board (BPSB) is a community organization developed to work parallel with the Sacramento City Unified District Board of Education. Its major responsibility is to support the educational growth and achievement of Black students as well as monitor all educational activities and programs of the school district, ensuring that they are compatible with the needs of African Descendant students in the district. Additionally, the Executive Council of the BPSB provides support services to parents regarding the education of their students. The Executive Council members attend school meetings with parents to advocate for their children; provide workshops for parents interested in learning techniques to make learning more successful.

Written by scusdobserver

January 22, 2010 at 3:43 pm

A Letter from the chair of the Black Parallel School Board

The African American youth in Sacramento are at a state of heightened emergency in relation to their academic pursuit yet, we are not truly outraged about this. With education being one of the fundamental keys to success we must make every effort to ensure the academic key fits correctly once it’s placed into the hands of our African American youth.

On Saturday, September 5, 2009, the Black Parallel School Board held its monthly meeting at the Oak Park United Methodist Church in Sacramento. The meeting started promptly at 10 am and adjourned at 12 pm. One of the key items we covered was standardized testing. Readers are you aware that within the Sacramento City Unified School District during the past school year of all the African American students they are serving only 8 children of African descent are in geometry and there are only 9 African Descent youth in Algebra II. African American students overall have made little to none standardized test improvements and the same is occurring with the high school exit exam test results. Our children’s ability to articulate themselves in written form is declining astronomically too.

Children of African descent are not doing well when it comes to mathematics and language arts this is a fact. Together as a community, we have a job to do. This job goes beyond the band-aid approach. When the Black Parallel School Board meets monthly we are not there in large numbers along with our children, nieces, nephews, siblings, aunts, uncles, parents and the like, yet we wonder why our children are doing poorly.

We will come together in large numbers to support concerts, ball games, and other extra curricular activities; however, we neglect to use the same energy and efforts to bring about constant change when it comes to our children’s academic minds in fear of rattling the chains.

We must call ourselves to a higher place of accountability by ridding ourselves of the lackadaisical attitude and by not selfishly assuming that this doesn’t impact you. Our ancestors did not bleed, die, and be dehumanized for generations for us to stop fighting.

The battle doesn’t end until we are called home. This battle is not just an African American battle, it is a battle that every race is responsible for fighting for their culture individually and for other cultures too. When one is not adequately educated they will lack the tenacity needed to be positive community contributors causing the cycle of poverty to continue to perpetuate from generation-to-generation. This in and of itself is one of the key ingredients that continues to feed racism.

STAR test results are our business even if it means holding all-night tutoring sessions — so well be it. Being on a unified forefront is so essential. When we come to the table to discuss education, we should be on one accord regardless of our level of achievements and the accolades associated with our name(s). Our skin color is also not an item that we should constantly focus our attention, but that isn’t to say it isn’t a vital area. Our primary focal point should always be those children who are not performing at their “True Potential” even if they aren’t in our neighborhoods. We are truly living in a world where we are constantly producing lost generations who are wandering around hopelessly looking and waiting for us to take charge of them — we appear to be asleep.

Most people are quick to play the, “race card” not too many of those same individuals are willing to come into a room and set aside differences to bring about true change. Politicians want you to hear them so they can be elected yet, when elections occur, you don’t see them until it’s election time again. The fact that there is no funding truly doesn’t matter, what matters is that we all want the best for Sacramento children; that in and of itself is enough for us to work until we can see the change verses just thinking change is going to plop out of the sky into our laps — we have to go and get it.

Those who caused things to truly happen took care of business and they did it with so much passion where they didn’t even care if that meant that they lost their lives in the mist of the fight. Our children are doing poorly in Sacramento in terms of education; I asked when will The Next Generation’s Academic Failures Be Truly Televised. Years ago, survival occurred academically, physically, and financially because there was a unified effort for everyone to, “Be There Brothers/Sisters Keeper At All Cost.”

I am writing as a concerned citizen who is on the battlefield for our youth regardless of their ethnicity, social economic status, religion, and/or sexual orientation.

Lailah Ameerah Muwwakkil

“And now we are reaching out for the daybreak of freedom and justice and equality.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

Written by scusdobserver

September 11, 2009 at 9:14 pm

The Black Parallel School Board

The Black Parallel School Board, which meets on the first Saturday of the month, has posted a summary of their first year accomplishments.
At this month’s meeting a discussion was held with Susan Miller, interim superintendent, concerning district efforts to improve the cross-cultural effectiveness of staff. She stated that SCUSD is committed to equity in its efforts through a top- down and bottom-up approach. At the top the principals are trained monthly in how to have conversations with staff in this area and how to evaluate the effects of these conversations. From the bottom model classrooms have been identified for observation of effective cross-cultural teaching. In addition, an equity team is in place and an equity audit is being developed to look at all of SCUSD’s practices from this perspective. A strong suggestion was offered that accountability needs to be included in SCUSD’s efforts and that acting on bias needs to have consequences.

Written by scusdobserver

February 8, 2009 at 5:32 pm