October 24, 2016
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ISAAC conference at Wayne State University to focus on education for African- American Children, June 19 & 20

 ISAAC takes the leadership in proposing a solution to the academic achievement gap that affects African American children with a Banquet and Round Table on June 19 and 20.


Leading nationally recognized scholars will present the Obama Administration with a plan to enable African American children to achieve educational excellence and take their rightful place of leadership in the 21st century.


            The Institute for the Study of the African American Child (ISAAC), a Wayne State University proposed research institute, will host a weekend of events that are directed toward closing the academic achievement gap affecting African American children.

            The events begin with a banquet dinner dance to be held on June 19 from 7:30 p.m. to 1 a.m. at the Marriott Hotel in the RenaissanceCenter. The speaker will be Dr. Na’im Akbar, one of the most prominent African centered psychologists in the world. Dr. Akbar is formerly chair of the psychology department at MorehouseCollege. He has been acclaimed by Essence Magazine as “one of the world’s preeminent psychologists and a pioneer in the development of an African-centered approach to modern psychology.

            The Round Table will be held on Saturday, June 20. Registration and an Executive Continental Breakfast begins at 7 a.m. The program begins at 8:30 a.m. at WayneStateUniversity’s StudentCenterBuilding, 5221 Gullen Mall, in Detroit.

            “ISAAC is a civil rights organization with one goal – educational equity for African American children. It is time for a plan to guide the journey of African American children through school, said founding director and WSU professor, Dr. Janice E. Hale. “For too long educators have allowed the sparks of learning in African American children to be covered by excuses, denials and sidesteps. ISAAC is a bold initiative to bring the community together to reverse the patterns of failure among African American children and youths.”

            The keynote speaker in the morning at the Round Table is Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings, Kellner Family Chair in Urban Education and Professor and Chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction and Educational Policy Studies. Her topic will be, “Pushing Past the Achievement Gap.” Dr. Ladson-Billings received her doctorate at SanfordUniversity and is also a former president of the American Educational Research Association.

            The Round Table in the afternoon will be moderated by Dr. James C. Young, professor of ClarkAtlantaUniversity. The speakers will be Attorney Godfrey Dillard, lead attorney in the University of Michigan Affirmative Action case that was argued before the United States Supreme Court; Dr. Robert W. Simmons, III, formerly of Eastern Michigan University, has accepted an appointment at Loyola University Maryland in Baltimore where he will serve as founding director of the Center for Innovation in Education as well as assistant professor of science education; and Attorney Brenda Priestly Jackson, a member of the Duval County (Jacksonville) Florida school board. The Round Table will outline the plan for FIGHT, the public policy arm of ISAAC.

            “We are calling all parents, teachers, administrators, activists and concerned citizens to join us in creating a coalition to change the futures of African American children in this society,” Hale said. “Nothing and no one is going to change the quality of education delivered to our children until we stand up and demand it.”

            The Round Table registration fee includes an executive continental breakfast, box lunches, and printed materials. Following the Round Table, there will be a Soul Food Jazz Buffet for a separate fee at the WayneStateUniversityMcGregorMemorialConferenceCenter. Registration forms for all events are available on the ISAAC Web site at:  http://www.coe.wayne.edu:16080/ISAAC/.  Additional information can be obtained by contacting Saundra Sumner at (313) 577-0991 or ac6642@wayne.edu.

Wayne StateUniversity is a premier urban research university offering more than 350 academic programs through 13 schools and colleges to more than 31,000 students.


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