Parental Involvement Project for Bronzeville Public Schools (Spring 2003) IPRO 303
Escasa, Julie Anne
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The goal of this project is to assist our client, the Lugenia Burns Hope Center, expand an already-established parents organization serving seven of Bronzeville's public schools: Doolittle West, Dootlittle East, Raymond, Abbot, Donahue, Wells-Prep, and Mayo. This organization P.O.W.E.R. for our kids (Parents Organization Working for Educational Responsibility for our kids)--is an independent network of parents and community organizers working in concert with the Local School Councils to improve student achievement and educational opportunity. Our team will create promotional literature advertising the cause of the union, research the problems in the schools, and propose changes to the curriculum and the culture of the schools, which members of POWER and the local school councils can implement. This project gives students in the Leadership Academy an introduction to grass-roots, community organizing. Students involved with Math/Science education and the Young Women's Charter School might join the team to advise our client on best classroom practices. Students of public policy, law, political science, and architecture would be challenged to place the problems of the schools within the context of city, state, and federal policies on education, housing, land-use and other aspects related to the vitality of healthy neighborhoods. Should students of psychology join the project, they might help the team understand those aspects of human motivation and behavior required for building of human capital in low income communities. And, of course, students of technical communication, design, and internet communications, finally, would not only be valuable additions to the team because of their interests in web site and document design, but because of their interests in constructing persuasive texts. In general, students with an interest in making a difference in the surrounding, IIT community would have an opportunity to work with community leaders who likewise want to see Bronzeville's public schools better serve their children.