Friday, August 29, 2008

This Weekend - African Festival of the Arts

Azizi Books is selling discounted advance tickets to the African Festival of the Arts.

This Labor Day weekend Chicago's Washington Park transforms into an authentic African village complete with three stages of spectacular entertainment featuring Kool and the Gang, Rachelle Ferrell, Diblo Dibala, Nicholas Payton, Big Daddy Kane and Black Sheep among outstanding others; African Marketplace showcasing authentic art and culture; luscious African cuisine and fare; cultural pavilions; fantastic family fun; and premiering the first ever African Festival of the Arts youth tennis tournament.

For more information about the festival click here.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Shocking Facts About Chicago Public Schools

September 2 is scheduled to be the first day of school for the Chicago Public School district but this year, students are taking a stand and boycotting the first day back. The boycott is organized by The Save Our Schools campaign (S.O.S.) in protest to the serious lack of funding that Chicago Public Schools receive as opposed to suburban schools.

S. O. S. says,
"On September 2, we have decided that instead of children attending the first day of school for Chicago Public Schools, we are taking our children to a well funded school district in Winnetka and attempt to register/enroll them. If the state won’t provide the necessary school funding for poor and minority children school districts in Chicago, we’ll go where they can receive a quality education."

Save Our Schools Now

Take a look at these shocking facts!

Only 6 of 100 Black and Latino high school freshmen males will graduate from a four year college. Source: University of Chicago’s Consortium on Chicago School Research

Between 2003 and 2007, white students' reading scores went up while African American, Hispanic and low-incomes student's scores went down. (Chicago Sun-Times, October 31, 2007)

Money spent in Illinois on:
Housing an adult prisoner: $21,000
Educating a child in Chicago: $10,000
Source: Illinois State Board of Education
Office of Governor Rod Blagojevich

Only 9% of African American 4th graders ranked proficient or above in reading, ranking Illinois 38 out of 41 states. (Chicago Sun-Times, November 2, 2006)

Illinois has the largest unaddressed district-to-district funding gap in the nation. (Source: Education Trust)

2005-2006 School Year Graduation
Rates in Chicago
Black males - 37%
White males - 62%
(Source: Schott Foundation)

Illinois ranks 49 out of the 50 states when it comes to funding education from state funds. (Source: Education Trust)

View more facts about the school funding crisis...

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