Real Men Giving Real Time®
In 2010, several nationally known surveys (The Schott Report, Children's Defense
Fund, etc.) indicating that children across the United States are achieving below
their grade level; with an egregious number being significantly below their grade
level highlighted the need for immediate action.
This need for action is especially significant for Las Vegas as we observe that
many of the children enrolling in our schools, especially in the North Las Vegas
area, are achieving below their grade level. Depending on their age and grade,
they are anywhere from 2-4 grades below where they should be. It's a gap in learning
that must be addressed. It's no surprise that many of the same kids with poor reading
skills, math skills, science skills, and weak cognitive skills often turn out to
be the children who cause most of the disruptions in the classroom and bring down
the overall test scores for the schools. Our goal is to expand programs that help
turn this around.
In response the 100 is expanding its "Making Math and Science Fun" program.
The focus of this program is to get more children to understand the need for Math
and Science and implement innovative methods (tutoring, experiential learning,
robotics, etc.) to make math and science more desirable and fun.
Extracurricular help in the form of tutoring is required. We primarily approach
this need from two directions:
- In-House tutoring - this is where a formal tutoring program is established
in every school we mentor. Teachers from the various schools are used and paid
- Outsourced tutoring - this is where we use outside companies to provide tutoring.
This year we are able to provide our kids with outsourced tutoring through the
21st Century Foundation in partnership with the Urban League.
Where are we today?
The role of the Education Committee has evolved over the last two years. We are
supporting projects that validate our engagement with the students we mentor and
the 100 Academy of Excellence charter school. That means developing evidenced-based
data that can tell us how effective our programs are at impacting academic outcomes
of the students we serve. Ideally, we want them to come to school ready to learn
and develop into independent learners who are excited about education. Close collaboration
with the school leaders, community, and 100 Black Men mentors are improving student
outcomes every day.
100 Academy of Excellence
The Education Committee has committed and pledged our resources to promoting the
long term sustainability of the 100 Academy of Excellence and students. The 2010
school year has signaled a renewed commitment to the school by selecting a new
leader and principal with an extraordinary background in education. Peggy Selma
came out of retirement as a former Assistant Superintendent of the Los Angeles
Unified School District and successful principal. In addition, Shawn Smith, retired
Chief Master Sergeant, USAF, and 100 Black Men of Las Vegas Mentoring committee
chair and board member is the assistant principal.
They have worked hard this year to establish an academic success model designed
to help the students exceed expectations. Principal Selma hired a new team of licensed
and proven veteran teachers to give the students a rich academic experience. A
strong commitment to teacher development is now in place. The training is equipping
the teachers with great strategies to use to help their students achieve academic
excellence. A new baseline has been established this year of student academic performance.
The data will serve as the basis for instructional improvements for the new school
year and will lead to achieving Annual Yearly Progress goals. The school received
the second highest award at the National Imagine Schools Forum this summer for
Where do we go from here?
The recent performance should position the 100 Academy of Excellence well for
capacity building in the next school year. The summer campaign to increase capacity
at the school has resulted in an astounding seventy-five percent new student enrollment
projected for 2011 and 2012 school year. This year we established the 100 Academy
Foundation and obtained 501(c) (3) tax exempt status. The goal is to support the
financial sustainability of the school through fund-raising, grants, donations,
and future scholarship awards for college-bound mentees. We are very proud of the
leadership and progress at our school. We also realize that the key to lasting
student academic success requires a cradle to post-college commitment.
How we measure Education success?
- Begin with a comprehensive needs assessment
- Work to close learning gaps by differentiating the instructional program
- Compare incoming learning gains to outgoing learning gains
- Continue to assess all student's progress by using the following
- Benchmark Assessments
- Quarterly student progress reports
- Semester grades
- Formal testing
- Informal testing
- Input from parents
- Make any changes or adjustments to the curriculum as needed
- Infuse technology into the instructional program by providing software that
challenges and motivates students.
- The music program now includes instrumental and choral music. Spanish is being
taught to upper elementary students and the middle school.
Highlights and successful programs participated in by the Education Committee
Recently, the top educator in the Clark County School District, Superintendent
Dwight Jones, visited the 100 Academy of Excellence for a luncheon with the 100
Black Men. He was given a tour of the school and visited summer school classrooms.
In collaboration with Ronald McDonald House and Cox Communications, over the past
ten (10) years we have provided in excess of 75 academic scholarships to students
from all walks of life and from all over the Las Vegas valley. In fact, in January
2011 at our For the Love of a Child 10th Anniversary Celebration, we awarded fifteen
thousand dollars ($15,000) in scholarships to six (6) local high school students.
Annual Scholarship Workshop
Additionally, in collaboration with NV Energy (Powerful Partnership Scholarship)
and The Public Education Foundation we have held a Scholarship Workshop. The workshop
was designed to inform high school seniors on how to complete scholarship applications,
raise awareness of the availability of local scholarships and teach students and
their parents the key elements of successful applications. According to NV Energy,
there have been a record number of applications submitted this year.
The Chapter and its members continue to receive awards and accolades. Recognition
has come from the community as a whole, schools, teachers, parents, and the kids
for the work we do and the help we provide in the educational and tutoring areas.
In large part for its efforts in the educational arena, the Las Vegas Chapter
has won the coveted 100 Black Men of America, Inc. Chapter of the Year Award twice.
This award signifies the dedication and effectiveness of our work as compared to
116 Chapters internationally. Additionally, one of the most prestigious awards
we received was from the Clark County School District. The school district recognized
our mentoring and educational efforts with an Excellence in Education Award. The
award hangs today at the Clark County School District Headquarters Building on
their Education Wall of Fame.