“You need a positive approach in order to work for change because you have to believe that even if you cannot bring it about all by yourself, you can still make a difference.”-Dorothy Height
On March 24, the Department of Education Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships hosted “Woman and Girls Winning the Future through Education.” The event honored the legacy of Dr. Dorothy Irene Height and focused on empowering women of all ages to become involved with education issues in their individual communities to raise achievement levels. The center partnered with the Black Women’s Roundtable which is a part of the National Coalition for Black Civic Participation. Also women from local community and faith-based organizations, and federal employees from across the government attended the event. Senior leadership from both the Department of Education and the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships to discuss school turnaround, mentoring, college completion and other issues pertinent to women and girls.
During the event, we hosted a roundtable discussion where attendees shared their ideas on how communities can be involved in their schools and bring positive change. Participants suggested ways to encourage corporations to fund programs; encourage individuals to use personal networks to connect teachers with resources; and increase communication with all individuals and agencies (teachers, parents, local school districts, state governments, federal branches) in a way that supports schoolchildren today. Participants also suggested expanding mentor programs in schools, ideas on how to get parents involved, and how we can get corporations to invest in students. Many new inspiring ideas were born at the event.
One participant noted, “Great session! I look forward to partnering with you and others to improve education in our country and community.” We too, look forward to partnering with you. One of the quickest and easiest ways to partner with our office is through joining our email list. You can do this by emailing the address below and request to join the list.
Thanks to everyone that participated and offered inspiring ideas and advice that help inform our work at the Department of Education Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships. Our next step from here will be to host a conference call with participants and other partners of the Center to discuss these ideas. We want to continue to engage woman and girls in uplifting the culture of education and achievement in communities. If you would like to share your ideas on best practices of engaging local communities in education please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or find us on Facebook.
Anna Leach is an intern with the Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships at the U.S. Department of Education.