View DiT’s latest video clips on Social Justice and Cultural Clubs

We invite you to have a look at our developing section on Social Justice and Cultural Clubs under Project / Social Justice and Culture Club section. Here you can view and read what students, teachers and school administrators say about various clubs in the TDSB. On this page  you can view several video clips on what Students learn about themselves as a result of participating in clubs.

On this post we invite you to share your own reflections on what you learned as a result of being in Social Justice and Culture Clubs.

Teach For America boosts diversity

Posted: Thursday, October 10, 2013 6:25 am

By Rebecca S. Rivas

Chris Leatherwood is a seventh-grade math teacher at Gateway Middle School, and he is part of the two percent of teachers nationwide who are African-American males.

He understands that there is a growing need for more black male teachers, he said. But that’s not why he chose to join Teach For America, a national organization that trains professionals to become teachers in low-income communities.

“I’m a product of the public schools, and I know how underprepared I was to enter college,” said Leatherwood, a Washington University graduate in English literature who joined the organization this year. “I wanted to help kids to be better prepared than I was.”

Just eight percent of children who grow up in low-income communities graduate college by age 24, according to the Postsecondary Education Opportunity research group. When Leatherwood committed to teaching in public schools for two years with Teach For America, he joined about 6,000 TFA teachers nationwide who want to ensure that all children receive an excellent education.


Click here to read the full on-line article.

St. Mary’s schools out to build more diverse teaching staff


St. Mary’s public schools officials are looking for ways to hire a more diverse teaching staff that better reflects the diversity of its student body.

Those efforts will be among the day-to-day responsibilities of Nicola Williams, who began work last month as the school system’s new coordinator of certificated staffing and minority recruitment.

Williams was tasked with looking at what is working and what is not working in the school system in areas related to diversity, including recruiting and retaining a diverse workforce. She said it will take some time to complete an assessment, but she already has ideas.

The achievement gap between minority and other students is “a complex issue,” Williams said. Funding, what’s best in terms of instruction and other issues need to be considered.

The local NAACP chapter and others have for years called for a more diverse school staff, including more African-American teachers to better represent the county’s demographics.

This year almost 19 percent of students in St. Mary’s public schools are African-American. Less than 7 percent of school staff members are black.

To read the full online article, click here.

A more diverse school, a more diverse county

A more diverse school, a more diverse county

Coahulla students, teachers unite around Hispanic heritage

By Christopher Smith

When Ivette Colón and her mother went to an Arizona diner in the summer of 2006, the year she immigrated from Puerto Rico, she said she experienced the kind of segregation she said she thought was left behind in the 1960s.

“I was told to wait for service,” she said. “So I did.”

But they were never served, she said. Eventually, Colón asked the staff and then the owner what was taking so long. They were told they wouldn’t be served because of Colón’s race.

Since coming to Dalton, and teaching at Coahulla Creek High School, Colón says she’s seen a community of diversity and acceptance. Students and staff are celebrating diversity, specifically the Latino population, during National Hispanic Heritage Month, which runs from Sept. 15 to Oct. 15.

Already the event has created “a lot of respect” between Hispanics and non-Hispanics alike, several students said.

Avery Hamilton, a Coahulla Creek student and vice president of the Spanish club who is currently learning the language, said he’s trying “to learn as much as I can about another culture.”

“Hispanic Heritage Month — that’s just showing people that there are other cultures out there,” he said, “and that there are large groups of people out there we can learn from.”

To read the full article, click here.

Immigrant daughter says she will bring parent, Latina perspective

September 30, 2013 12:10 AM

This is one in a series of profiles of candidates in this year’s city elections.

NEW BEDFORD — In high school, School Committee candidate Maria Mojica-Mosquea said staff discouraged her, a Puerto Rican daughter of a fishhouse worker, from going to college.

Twenty-two years, an early marriage, two children and several jobs later, Mojica became a UMass Dartmouth alum, now running for office to help others have an easier path.

“I saw my mom working three jobs, I saw how hard she worked and I knew that there are better options and no one showed me those better options, so that’s one of the reasons why I’m doing it,” said Mojica, 41, who achieved her “second goal” — after earning a bachelor’s, owning a home — this summer, moving into a house that fronts the green by the Hathaway School. “I’m still hearing the same experiences that I had and … we’re in 2013. To me that’s just unacceptable.”

For the full article click here.