Posts Tagged ‘TV’
Geoffrey Canada was the subject (along with Barbara Walters!) of Henry Louis Gates’s most recent “Finding Your Roots” program. Some amazing moments, including the will that valued Geoff’s great-great-grandfather, Thomas, a slave, at $250. Plus students at Promise Academy learning how much of their DNA ancestry traces to Africa.
Geoffrey Canada’s celebrity took a weird turn this weekend, when he was briefly impersonated by Jay Pharaoh during a “What Up With That” sketch on Saturday Night Live. No lines, but some smoking dance moves. Fast-forward to 5:10 or so.
“Over the coming weeks and months, we will work with Geoffrey and the Harlem Children’s Zone to put in place a program in Paterson that will emulate the success of Harlem Children’s Zone and give the children of Paterson a renewed sense of hope and opportunity.”
In a blog post on the Wall Street Journal’s web site, one expert was quoted sounding a skeptical note about the Paterson replication:
“We have an absolutely brutal track record of trying to replicate these things,” said Rick Hess, director of education policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute. Hess said Canada’s personal ties allowed him to take advantage of existing social programs, tie them together and raise money. … “There’s no harm in trying, but I think much more skepticism is necessary than has been the case,” he said of New Jersey’s new effort in Paterson.
More cause for concern about the future of Promise Neighborhoods came in this article in the Washington Post, in which Jim Shelton, the education department official (and former Gates Foundation executive) overseeing the Promise Neighborhood program, commented on the administration’s request to Congress for $210 million for this coming fiscal year, which had been reduced last year to $60 million by a House subcommittee and then to $20 million by a Senate subcommittee. (I wrote an op-ed in the New York Times last summer about the proposed cuts.) At the time, administration officials I spoke to sounded optimistic that much if not all of the funding would be restored, but in the Post article, Shelton
said that this year the administration probably will have only an additional $10 million for the Promise Neighborhood program and will request more money for the program again in 2012. “At a minimum, we could have a small-scale implementation, not nearly what we had anticipated,” Shelton said.
Gotham Schools reports that the Harlem Children’s Zone is in talks with the New York City Housing Authority to construct a new school building in the St. Nicholas housing project. The Promise Academy would expand into the new building:
HCZ and NYCHA officials are pitching the new building as a continuation of the Zone’s mission to integrate education and social services and connect an isolated housing development to the wider community. Residents of the Saint Nicholas Houses would also receive an admissions preference to the school, and officials said that residents would also receive a preference for an anticipated 100 jobs created by the new school.
On CNN, Princeton professor Julian E. Zelizer writes about Promise Neighborhoods and the Harlem Children’s Zone:
Promise Neighborhoods is one of the most ambitious efforts in recent years to tackle the crisis of urban youth. Geoffrey Canada’s work should offer one area of policy where Democrats and Republicans can join to show to the world that the election of 2008 did indeed reflect a genuine desire to eliminate some of the roots of racial inequality that continue to shape our country.
|The Colbert Report||Mon – Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c|
|Reverse Racism – Geoffrey Canada|
Geoffrey Canada was Stephen Colbert’s guest on the Colbert Report on Monday, talking about reverse racism and President Obama’s recent speech to the NAACP Centennial.
Soledad O’Brien reports for CNN on the Harlem Children’s Zone, including visits to Harlem Gems and Promise Academy, a clip from the Obama speech and cameos by Darryl Reeves and Darryl Reeves Jr., both of whom were featured in the Baby College chapter of Whatever It Takes.
Geoff Canada speaks to ABC News reporter Teddy Davis about the Obama administration’s plans to create Promise Neighborhoods, based on the Harlem Children’s Zone:
An Education Department official working on Promise Neighborhoods for Obama has told me that the federal government will begin taking grant applications in 2010 with the goal of giving out implementation grants in 2011. What should the Obama administration look for in someone who wants to start a Promise Neighborhood?
“There are a couple principles that we think are very important. The first is that the entity that applies ought to have some demonstrated capacity to do a very complex kind of planning. The second is that there has to be the ability to raise private dollars over a sustained period of time because in the end you are doing something that is going to take years to really deliver the kind of results that I think the president wants and you’ve got to make sure that you’ve got the capacity to continue to support the federal dollars. The third thing is that the programs have to be committed to data and evaluation. Fourth, there has to be a really committed board or management structure to ensure that the dollars are appropriated and accounted for accurately.”