The Education of Black Male Youth

January 16, 2010

Join us for the conclusion of this three-year lecture series. Whether you have followed our journey as we examined the educational and social issues affecting our boys of color, or this your first opportunity to join us, we encourage you to make these two hours of inspiration and information part of your Black History Month.

Thursday, February 11, 2010
4 to 6 p.m.
Wheelock Family Theatre

This event is free and open to the public. A reception will follow.

Please RSVP by Friday, February 5, to Thomas Simers at or (617) 879-2293. 

Featuring presentations by:

David Banks

David Banks began his career in education in 1986 in New York City's Public School 167 as a teacher. After receiving his law degree in 1992, he left the Department of Education to pursue a career in law. His undying passion for children called him back to the Department of Education in 1995, where he served as an Assistant Principal at P.S. 191 in Crown Heights. He recently accepted a new principalship to be the founding administrator of The Eagle Academy for Young Men, the first all-boys public high school in New York City in over 30 years.

The Eagle Academy for Young Men is a nurturing institution where students, faculty and community work together to develop academic excellence, ethical behavior, and personal responsibility. The Academy was formed in conjunction with the One Hundred Black Men, Inc.

Edward Fergus, Ph.D.

Dr. Edward Fergus is Deputy Director of the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education at New York University. A former high school teacher, he has and continues to provide technical assistance and analysis on education policy and research to school districts. He has published various articles on disproportionality in special education, race/ethnicity in schools, and author of Skin Color and Identity Formation: Perceptions of Opportunity and Academic Orientation among Mexican and Puerto Rican Youth (Routledge Press, 2004).  Fergus is on the board of various organizations, including the Campaign for Fiscal Equity and Yonkers Partners in Education. Fergus was an Education and Research Analyst at the National Technical Assistance Center for Community Schools at The Children's Aid Society and a program evaluator with Metis Associates.  He is currently the Co-Principal Investigator of a study of single-sex schools for boys of color (funded by the Gates Foundation), the New York State Technical Assistance Center on Disproportionality, and various other research and programmatic endeavors focused on disproportionality and educational opportunity.

Dr. Fergus received his doctorate and masters in Social Foundations and Educational Policy from the University of Michigan. He earned his bachelor's in political science and teaching certificate from Beloit College.

Nina Gilbert 

Nina Gilbert is a resident of Lawrenceville, Ga., and a native of LaGrange, Ga. She received her BA degree in Psychology and English from West Georgia College, and a Master's Degree in Educational Leadership from Clark Atlanta University. Before beginning her work in education, her husbands' military career took their family to Arizona, the Netherlands and Alexandria, Va., where she worked as a counselor. Nina began working as a Gwinnett County Public Schools teacher in 1996. After becoming intrigued by the school choice movement, she left her job in 2005 as an administrator in a Gwinnett County alternative school to work on developing a charter school for students who needed access to high quality educational options in Gwinnett County.

In 2006, Nina was nominated and selected to enter in a yearlong fellowship for educators in Boston, Mass. Upon completion of the Building Excellent Schools Fellowship, Gilbert returned to Georgia in 2007 to open Ivy Preparatory Academy, a college preparatory charter school for girls. Ivy Prep opened in 2008, and has 310 students that attend from at least 10 Metro-Atlanta districts.

Nina has been recognized and profiled by Maybelline Cosmetics, CNN, Essence Magazine, and received an Outstanding Citizen award from the Secretary of State for her work in education, and in her community.

Nina and her husband, James, are the proud parents of three children, James Bernard II, Brandon and Brittany Faith. 

Andre Norman 

Andre Norman was born into a large inner-city family that struggled to stay above the poverty line, and Andre was the child who got lost in the shuffle. Without guidance and structure, Andre descended into a life of crime, starting with shoplifting and escalating to armed robbery and assault, all while still in high school. Andre's crimes led him to an 18-25 year prison term.

In the early 1990s, Andre made a fateful decision that he would leave prison, attend college, and work with youth. His transformation took a spiritual turn in the late 1990s when an Orthodox Jewish rabbi befriended and mentored him, and in the spring of 1999, an encounter with the Roman Catholic Church's Cursillo program lead Andre to his Christian walk. On Nov. 15, 1999, Andre left prison focused on staying in Christ and fulfilling his two goals of attending college and helping youth. He is studying at Boston College and has continued to work with young people. Although he became involved in a Protestant church, Andre has maintained his strong links his Catholic and Jewish communities.

Since his release, Andre has dedicated his life to using his story to reach those in need. Andre has developed innovative programs for high-risk youth, adults, and corporate executives, and mentored ex-offenders, inner-city, and suburban high school students. Andre taught a course on the U.S. prison system at Tufts University as a visiting lecturer in 2005.

Andre's message of hope, transformation, and how to turn obstacles into opportunities has inspired countless people to think differently about their lives and purpose.

The Education of Black Male Youth Flyer [pdf]

inspire a world of good

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