Friday, November 23, 2012

Richard Wright Public Charter School and the Maryland Foster Youth Resource Center

Dr. Mike Robinson, host of Parent Talk Live highlighted two community based organizations parents and community stakeholders need to know. In part three of a three part series on Organizations you need to know.

The first guest of the evening, Dr. Marco Clark, CEO and Head of School, Richard Wright Public Charter School located in Washington, DC. Dr. Clark is a young visionary leader on the rise with an urgent message to deliver about the state of urban education/youth. Currently, he serves as Founder and Chief Executive Officer of the Richard Wright Public Charter School for Journalism and Media Arts in Washington, DC.

His second guest, Ms. Shalita O’Neale, Founder and CEO of Maryland Foster Youth Resource Center, located in Baltimore, Maryland. Shalita O’Neale is a former foster youth from Baltimore, Maryland where she spent 19 years collectively in kinship and foster care. She initially entered kinship care at 2 years old and bounced back and forth between family members before officially entering foster care at the age of 13. She graduated from the University of Maryland at College Park with a B.A. in criminology in 2004 and is currently seeking her Master of Social Work at the University of Maryland Baltimore.

Hite hires his CFO from Prince George's County

Superintendent William Hite has hired Matthew E. Stanski as chief financial officer for the School District. Stanski worked in that position in the Prince George's County school district when Hite was head of the schools there.
Stanski, 34, left Prince George's under controversial circumstances. Persons close to the situation indicated that it was the product of turmoil resulting from Hite's own hastened departure and did not reflect on Stanski's skills or fitness for the job here.
The controversy, reported in the Washington Post, focuses on Stanski's cutting of a severance check for another departing official that was not authorized by the Board of Education. 
In an interview, Hite said that Stanski has "a good bit of technical knowledge and the right disposition" for the job. Among other things, Hite said, Stanski helped Prince George's eliminate a $300 million deficit and turned in budgets that received clean audits after years of problematic ones.
Hite said that Stanski also has his trust, and that is important, given the District's history of poor communication between former Superintendent Arlene Ackerman and former CFO Michael Masch.
"Part of it was a level of comfort, and I wasn't the only one who felt like he has the type of skills that we needed," Hite said.
School Reform Commission member Feather Houstoun said that Stanski was "head and shoulders above the other candidates that we met." Chief Recovery Officer Thomas Knudsen, who has already been working with Stanski, said in a statement that Stanski "has the full confidence of Dr. Hite. I cannot emphasize how important that is."
Houstoun said she was looking for a CFO who could assemble a good team, had been part of a high-performing organization, and could "translate and bring to understandable terms the complexity of what we are dealing with." 
She said that Stanski met those criteria.
"I was aware of the controversy in Prince George's County before I met him," Houstoun said. "We talked about it ... and it did not, to me, rise to be a disabling thing. I think he will be a real asset to the District."
Prince George's school board member Donna Hathaway also spoke highly of Stanski and said his departure took place in a "politicized environment."
"In my years working with Matt, I had the utmost respect for him, his abilities, the way he presented budgets and his knowledge," Hathaway said.
According to those with knowledge of the controversy, the Prince George's general counsel told Stanski to write a lump-sum severance check to former human resources director Synthia J. Shilling instead of paying out her severance in biweekly increments -- and he did so. Shilling left the district in August when she was facing trial for leaving the scene of an accident.
Stanski and the general counsel were dismissed. Stanski appealed the dismissal and was allowed to resign, according to persons with knowledge of the situation.
Stanski is the second Prince George's official Hite has brought with him to high-level positions. The other is Karyn Lynch, who is chief of student services.
He starts Monday, according to District spokesman Fernando Gallard.

When Daddy Dances Daughters Smile

“Nothing I've ever done has given me more joys and rewards than being a father to my children.” Bill Cosby

The importance of fathers can never be disputed in a child’s life. There are many committees, organizations, groups, and clubs that support the growth and development of girls and young women locally and nationally. My personal association with Girls Inc. is participating in the Daddy Daughter Dance. I was fortunate to accompany two of my TEAMUP students to this great event. They had never participated in this type of dance and I was honored and humbled that their mother, a single parent raising her two girls allowed me to take them.

As you can imagine they were excited beyond words. As an educator in public education and working with TEAMUP through The Bridge at my school enables me to teach and encourage young girls and boys to be the best they can be and to teach them to always strive for the stars in academics, to guide social behaviors and motivate students to learn. It amazes me that so many people criticize teacher’s, we do our collective and individual bests to help students in and out of the classroom. As a father and educator it is important to support all children with an anointing of encouragement, wisdom to help them overcome obstacles that they may face in life and model the value of education. This is the responsibility of a father, to be supportive, encouraging, wise of the dangers of the world, use loving discipline and have high expectations to guide their daughters to success and just as importantly sons also.

I encourage fathers, even divorced fathers to be involved in their daughters, stepdaughters, granddaughters, and Goddaughters life. It does make a profound difference in how daughters develop emotionally, mentally and even spiritually. There are too many detrimental influences in society through media outlets; radio, TV, social media and other avenues that do not support positive and healthy lifestyles for girls and women. Statistics do show the positive influences of fathers that are involved, but it goes beyond statistics. It affects the very fiber of societal influences and economic directions for girls as they mature into women. Involvement by father’s means: honest and open communication, sharing of behavioral expectations, visiting schools and talking with teachers and administrators, volunteering in schools, family outings, emotional support, follow through on promises, keeping your word and owning up or “Man Up” to mistakes.

“A dad is someone who is a daughter's first love will be there for you no matter how bad of a mistake you've made will stand up for you when you need him; will give you their hugs and shoulders to cry on promises you that you will always be his little girl loves you so much and will sacrifice whatever it is to make you happy again A father is supposed to be the one man who will never give up on you ” Unknown No father is perfect, striving to be the best father/dad for your children is more important than how much money is in your pockets or trying to impress people. “A dedicated father is someone who carries pictures in his wallet where his money used to be.” William Jackson, from personal experiences Girls Inc.’s Daddy Daughter Dance provides daddies of all ages, cultures, and races to come together in support of their children and supporting the mission and vision of Girls Inc.

As stated on their web site; Girls Inc. inspires all girls to be strong, smart, and bold through life-changing programs and experiences that help girls navigate gender, economic, and potential social barriers. These words have importance, when girls grow into strong, intelligent, educated and empowered women she can accomplish great things in the world and be a role model for girls and women all around her. Fathers support your daughters; encourage their talents and abilities to grow into productive and successful women. Fathering / Parenting is not easy, in the grand scheme of life girls need their fathers. You have to be involved (connected) to be a positive and beneficial influence in your girl’s life.

My Daddy Daughter Pictures William Jackson, M.Ed. My Quest To Teach

Photos of the 2010 Parental Engagement Conference

Your pictures and fotos in a slideshow on MySpace, eBay, Facebook or your website!view all pictures of this slideshow

The Middle School Years

Visits From Engaged Parents and Dedicated Educators