First Presenter's Institution

Principal Kafele Consulting, LLC

Second Presenter's Institution

N/A

Third Presenter's Institution

N/A

Fourth Presenter's Institution

N/A

Fifth Presenter's Institution

N/A

Location

Session 9 (Ballroom A)

Strand #1

Academic Achievement & School Leadership

Relevance

By definition, an "at-risk" youngster is at risk of failing. There are a plethora of reasons as to why and the manifestations are typically evident in the classroom. The school must therefore examine the dynamics of the classroom which include equity and the overall performance of the classroom teacher and ask the question: Is the playing field level for this student toward increasing the probability that he / she will achieve academically in my school and classroom.

Brief Program Description

This engaging, interactive, self-reflective session focuses on equity at the classroom level. It challenges teachers to look within themselves relative to how they relate to and engage with their at-risk students of color and other underserved students. It challenges teachers to confront whatever biases they may bring to these students that may be either blatant, subtle, undetected or unacknowledged. It argues that high-performance is an impossibility in classroom environments where equity fails to exist.

Summary

One of the current hot topics in education is district, school and classroom level equity toward at-risk and other underserved student populations. This highly engaging, interactive, self-reflective session focuses on equity at the classroom level. It challenges classroom teachers to look within themselves relative to how they see, treat and relate with their at-risk students of color and other underserved students. It challenges classroom teachers to confront whatever biases they may bring to this population of students that may be either blatant, subtle, undetected or unacknowledged. It argues that high-performance is an impossibility in classroom environments where equity fails to exist. The presenter will engage attendees in a very sensitive yet healthy conversation on classroom equity in the areas of: The Attitude of the Teacher, Student Motivation, Classroom Climate and Culture, Building Relationships, Classroom Instruction, Cultural Responsiveness, Teacher Accountability, Planning and Organization, Professional Development and Parental Engagement. Through a series of self-reflective questions, attendees will engage in a self-assessment, through their “equity lens” of their own classroom practices relative to their at-risk students of color and other underserved students. They will be provided with strategies toward immediately connecting equitably with their at-risk and underserved student populations.

Evidence

I was principal of high performing urban schools for fourteen years. I led four different schools over that span of time and each one that I inherited was low-performing and dysfunctional upon my arrival. Through a focus on equitable school and classroom practices with an emphasis on developing a school-wide climate and culture conducive to all students having a willingness to achieve at high levels, each of those schools were subsequently labeled turnaround schools with the last one recognized for three consecutive years by US News and World report Magazine as one of America's best high schools. The proposed session focuses on the types of conversations I had with teachers over those years toward connecting with our at-risk students who in fact represented the majority of the student population.

Format

Individual Presentation

Biographical Sketch

A highly-regarded urban educator in New Jersey for over twenty years, Principal Baruti Kafele distinguished himself as a master teacher and a transformational school leader. As an elementary school teacher in East Orange, NJ, he was selected as the East Orange School District and Essex County Public Schools Teacher of the Year, he was a New Jersey State Teacher of the Year finalist, and a recipient of the New Jersey Education Association Award of Excellence.

As a middle and high school principal, Principal Kafele led the transformation of four different New Jersey urban schools, including "The Mighty" Newark Tech, which went from a low-performing school in need of improvement to national recognition, which included U.S. News and World Report Magazine recognizing it three times as one of America's best high schools.

One of the most sought-after education speakers in America, Principal Kafele is impacting America’s schools! He has delivered over two thousand conference and program keynotes, professional development workshops, parenting seminars and student assemblies over his 32 years of public speaking. An expert in the area of “attitude transformation,” Principal Kafele is the leading authority for providing effective classroom and school leadership strategies toward closing what he coined, the "Attitude Gap.” He is also the author of eight books which include his national best-sellers, Closing the Attitude Gap, Motivating Black Males, The Principal 50 and The Teacher 50. His 9th book, Is My School a Better School Because I Lead It? will be released in November, 2018.

Principal Kafele is the recipient of over 150 educational, professional and community awards which include the prestigious Milken National Educator Award, the National Alliance of Black School Educators Hall of Fame Award, induction into the East Orange, New Jersey Hall of Fame, and the City of Dickinson, Texas proclaiming February 8, 1998 as Baruti Kafele Day.

Keyword Descriptors

at-risk, equity, academic achievement, climate, culture, self-reflection

Presentation Year

2019

Start Date

3-6-2019 11:15 AM

End Date

3-6-2019 12:30 PM

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Mar 6th, 11:15 AM Mar 6th, 12:30 PM

Just "Level the Playing Field" and Watch Me Excel!

Session 9 (Ballroom A)

This engaging, interactive, self-reflective session focuses on equity at the classroom level. It challenges teachers to look within themselves relative to how they relate to and engage with their at-risk students of color and other underserved students. It challenges teachers to confront whatever biases they may bring to these students that may be either blatant, subtle, undetected or unacknowledged. It argues that high-performance is an impossibility in classroom environments where equity fails to exist.