SchoolBook: Panel: Parental Involvement Is Key to Success of Young Men of Color

Posted: May 15, 2012 at 9:13 pm


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May 15, 2012, 2:45 p.m.

In front of a modest but engaged audience at a panel discussion about raising young men of color, Sheron Smith, mother of the actor and rapper Mos Def, delivered a message that received an enthusiastic response.

When you have a child, its not about you anymore, she said to applause.

A few minutes later, Brenda Greene, a professor of English at Medgar Evers College and the mother of the rapper Talib Kweli, agreed that parents play a crucial role in their childs upbringing.

We have to take that responsibility or no one else will, she said.

The importance of parental involvement in all aspects of a childs life was a sentiment repeated throughout the panel, which was held at the Fashion Industries High School in Chelsea on Saturday afternoon. The discussion was the closing event of Eagle Week, a weeklong series of activities organized by the Eagle Academy Foundation to inspire and educate young men of color.

Other activities for students from the Eagle Academies for Young Men in the Bronx, Brooklyn and Queens included a day of community service, a breakfast at Yankee Stadium with speeches from Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, and a youth summit featuring book discussions with authors and mentors.

David Banks, president and chief executive officer of the Eagle Academy Foundation, said the goal of the week was for students to be inspired to know that they are special, that they can be all that they want to be.

And many students who showed up to the youth summit on Saturday the event immediately preceding the panel discussion said they had gained a lot from the activities.

I felt good about being out there with my Eagle brothers, said Xavier Thomas, a 17-year-old senior at Eagle Academy in the Bronx. It brought us Eagles closer together.

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SchoolBook: Panel: Parental Involvement Is Key to Success of Young Men of Color

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May 15th, 2012 at 9:13 pm

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