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Monday April 20th 2015
The Independent Business News Network was established in July of 2008. The goal of IBNN is to provide a different view of the local, national and global news and events that happen in the Black communities around the world. IBNN's expectations are to provide a level of coverage and investigative reporting not seen on local mainstream media, while covering Politics, Education, Money, Business, and Community events. IBNN is an affiliate of Black Politics in Minneapolis, Radical Black USA and other African American news sources. Comments, concerns and questions can be emailed to

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Minneapolis NAACP to hold special election…again

#aplanmatters (Photo: Gumby and Pokey - Google search - Fair Use)

#aplanmatters (Photo: Gumby and Pokey – Google search – Fair Use)

On Saturday, May 2, the Minneapolis NAACP will hold a special election from 5-7p.m. at NorthPoint Wellness Clinics in north Minneapolis located at 1313 Penn Ave N, Minneapolis, MN 55411. Anyone who signs up THAT DAY AT NorthPoint and becomes a member of the Minneapolis NAACP (branch #4050) will be eligible to vote on the night of the election. All positions are currently open (president, vice president, second vice president, secretary, treasure and other positions) – you are encouraged to run.

Join the NAACP Special Election on Facebook by clicking here.

By Donovan Kirkfitzgearld, Contributing Columnist – IBNN NEWS

Minneapolis, Minn. – (April 5, 2015)…The NAACP is more than just an acronym. Unfortunately, the former Minneapolis NAACP board, elected by a special election on Dec. 13, 2013 decided they could wield the power of letters without following critical constitutional processes that could have led to critical concerns by the national branch and lawsuits by individuals and organizations being targeted.

Minnesota NAACP conference chairman W.C. Jordan told IBNN in an exclusive interview via telephone: “The group elected in 2013 was suppose to hold an election in November 2014. That never happened. I’ve been instructed and given the authority by the national [NAACP] to hold a special election to once again reboot the Minneapolis branch.”

Nina Johnson, a long-time member of the Minneapolis NAACP in good standings told IBNN, “I never received one meeting notice in 2014-YTD. I called and stop by the office listed online and no one was ever there. On occasion, I would pick up the local community newspapers and see someone listed as president speaking on behalf of the NAACP, I wondered, when was the notice, or vote given by the local membership for this person to use and represent the membership of the Minneapolis NAACP.”

As of this report, there is no Minneapolis NAACP pursuant to the NAACP constitution because it (the constitution) was never followed by the executive board of the Minneapolis NAACP. I short, the Minneapolis branch of the NAACP is in receivership and there are no representatives, incumbents or spokespersons on behalf of the Minneapolis NAACP pursuant to the notice that went out via U.S. mail, which is in accordance to alert local members 30-days before any election…in this case a special election has been vetted.

In the last 16-months after the Dec. 13, 2013 elections, there has been no public distributed reports; a Minneapolis NAACP website, nor has there been notification to ALL members of the Minneapolis branch of the NAACP.

In March of 2014, the Minneapolis branch lost most of its executive committee with the exception of the president and assistant secretary. This debacle of the Minneapolis NAACP meltdown blamed on conflict of interests and alleged misogynistic disposition within the organization laid bare to the hierarchy doing whatever they pleased – this include shakedowns of nonblack organizations and some African American individuals.

The Star Tribune attacked me with a one-sided polemic masquerading as journalism

Don Allen asking the Minneapolis Public Schools board of directors to "fix" one school or resign. (photo: IBNN NEWS)

Don Allen asking the Minneapolis Public Schools board of directors to “fix” one school or resign. (photo: IBNN NEWS)

In 2011, I was very disappointed by the article published about my work with the public schools in the Star Tribune last week (“Critic of Schools Now Paid to Promote Them”). While it has become clear that the article contains a number of factual errors and misstatements, I also believe that it is crucial to address its broader substance and tone. The Star Tribune never let me publish my editorial, so now I take this opportunity to say what I must. The MPS still owes me $3800.00 for work completed and delivered.

By Don Allen, Publisher – The Independent Business News Network

Minneapolis, Minn. – (March 4, 2015)…Community Standards Initiatives (CSI) did not deliver. Former Minneapolis Public Schools superintendent Bernadeia Johnson did not deliver. The Minneapolis Public Schools is not delivering to its learners. In 2011, I delivered, in full for a $15,000 contract that should have gone platinum until the Star Tribune decided a professional black man should not be doing this type of educational engagement.

I was disappointed not only by the misleading and biased statements that writer Corey Mitchell made about me personally. In addition, by its implied disparagement of the thousands of bloggers like me, who stand apart from the mainstream media, and use community blogs to express their civic points of view. I was disappointed for the children of the Minneapolis Public School system, whose interests and education are lost in the midst of Mr. Mitchell’s screed. I was also disappointed on behalf of the broader readership of the Star Tribune, which was presented with a one-sided polemic masquerading as journalism.

Mr. Mitchell used this platform to excoriate me and the Minneapolis Public School officials that I have worked with so closely in the several months. Having been a vocal critic of the school system, he claimed, I should have been disqualified to work on a campaign to help promote and improve it. I find this assertion to be highly problematic and illogical. I firmly believe that it is the right, and in fact the duty, of an informed, active citizenry to seek to reform the institutions that we inhabit, especially those that most directly concern our children. This is something that I was taught by my parents, who migrated to the Twin Cities from Mississippi and Jamaica, respectively, in the 1950s.

Unlike the author of the article, I am a life-long resident of the Twin Cities. I was born in the Como neighborhood of St. Paul. Moreover, like more than a million others across the United States, I use my blog as a vehicle of free expression. I speak out of my passion and conviction to address what I believe are the grievous woes that continue to plague the minority- ethnic populations of the Twin Cities, and to seek to find solutions to them. On my blog I have addressed crime and violence in the community, high rates of unemployment, the misappropriation of funds by governmental and non-governmental agencies, civil rights, and the challenges facing our schools. At the top of any urban agenda must be securing the right to a high quality education, and providing stable, good paying jobs to those adults who are willing and able to work.

I have indeed been an outspoken critic of the school system in the past. But criticism is the basis of a vibrant democracy. And critics must also work towards finding solutions. Complacency, silence, and a willingness to stand silently by in the face of inequality and injustice are emphatically not forms of civic virtue. Mr. Mitchell’s characterization of me as having “savaged” the school system manifests his failure to acknowledge the right and necessary place of debate and reform in a democratic society.

I was very glad to be offered a chance to work with the school system to help promote public education in Minneapolis. A major topic taken up in the article is the process by which the contract was attained.   In addition to my community activism, I have been in advertising, marketing and public relations for over 30 years. I have worked for radio stations, corporations, small business owners, and the Department of Veterans Affairs in the Twin Cities, Seattle, Denver, and New York. In October 2010, I approached MPS with the idea to do a print and television campaign designed to help strengthen the city’s schools. The campaign is called “Bring Them Back,” and its goal is to stem the precipitous loss our student population to the suburbs and to private institutions. Over the course of the next 3 months, I held numerous meetings with MPS marketing and communications staff about my ideas for the campaign. They read and commented upon several scripts and working proposals—all before the contract was approved; a decision ultimately made by the full school board itself. Therefore, the quote in the article implying that my contract with the public schools had not been carefully “vetted” is absurd to the point that it is nearly perplexing. It may make for good newspaper copy, but has nothing at all to do with the process by which the contract was attained. All work completed was researched and approved by the MPS communications department.

I should also add that on Thursday February 24, 2011, two days after the article came out, I spoke with Jill Davis, the school board chairperson whom Corey Mitchell claimed to be quoting, at a community meeting at North High School that we were both attending. Her response to the article was, “he got that statement from me five-weeks ago, before I saw your fine work.” She further stated that as a parent with children in the Minneapolis Public School system, she has personally been concerned about some of the same issues that I have raised in my blog postings over the past several years. In addition, at this meeting, school board director Rebecca Gagnon came up to me and reiterated that she knew exactly who I was when the school board voted to approve the contract.

As a proud graduate of the Minneapolis Public Schools (Central High ‘79) I have been dismayed by the degree to which our city’s schools have declined since I was in attendance. In the 1960s and 1970s, our school system was one of the best ranked and most highly admired in the country. Today, we have one of the worst white/non-white achievement gaps in the nation (see “The Education Achievement Gap: Minnesota’s Embarrassment,” Minnesota Public Radio). I believe that every child—Asian, white, Latino, black, middle class, wealthy or poor- deserves an excellent education and a chance to achieve what we know as the American Dream.   With an army of advocates for our children, the right resources, and hearts and minds dedicated to closing the gap, we can help make the dream a reality.

For an honest, clear minded point of view on the issues discussed here, look at the high quality of work that we have produced. A series of ads that put on spectacular display the accomplishments of some of MPS’s most distinguished graduates. For more on my actual views on a variety of issues, see my “humble” blog – typos and all- (for which I have never accepted any advertising), or listen to my radio show, broadcast every weekend on BlogTalkRadio, which I host with long-time community activist Mr. Ron Edwards.

In closing, I am proud to stand with the Minneapolis Public Schools in this campaign. And as always, I will continue to stand with and on behalf of the residents of the city of Minneapolis and MPS learners who have been disenfranchised by a system of checks and balances that do not add up.

As I continue my education as a candidate for a Masters of Arts in Teaching (MAT), I must me mindful there are systems that do not like a voice of reason, critique or problem solving.

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges…riddle me this: When is it okay for a 17-year-old to be murdered in Minneapolis?

Leadership is about having each other’s backs – especially those of your city. Residents disengage when their leaders play mind-games and are inconsistent with their approach and style. Community members are vulnerable these days – not really knowing who to trust, rely upon or follow. At some point, Hodges must decide if she is truly a contender, or just another rhetoric-filled placeholder.

In Minneapolis there is a solution and plan…of course the mayor and her bougie cronies don’t want to hear it unless it comes from their political affiliations. To bad. #bloodysummer2015_Mpls.

By Don Allen, Publisher – 

Homicides involving firearms have been the leading cause of death for black males. Nevertheless, what puts youth at risk of gang involvement, crime and murder? A kid can tell you: Poverty, school failure, and substance abuse — lets not forget the intentional destruction of black family unit in Minneapolis.

To answer the riddle in the title of this editorial, it should never be Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for any youth to be killed in the streets of Minneapolis. The argument of SOP becomes compelling when adding poverty, education and the lack of leadership, both culturally and politically.

On Tuesday, March 31, a 17-year-old youth by the name of Maurice Brown was gunned down, ending his life in a senseless act of violence in the Phillips neighborhood of south Minneapolis. Sources tell IBNN that Brown was a high school student that was homeless at the time of his death. My question: Why is it okay for city officials, law enforcement, black leadership and the Minneapolis Public Schools to continue in watching the challenge get worse and not addressing it?

Yes, Maurice Brown was 17-years-old, but with the mainstreams version of identity, he could have been considered a young-man, or a “thug” if you will because if his affiliations and socioeconomic environment he filled. There is no information on what he was doing, or the activities that lead to his death, but IBNN is alleging this senseless murder can be connected with more black-on-black crime in Minneapolis.

Drop Out to Drop Ins founder Wesley Smith said, “Another black kid is dead. There has been no outcry or rage from our local infrastructure. It seems when a black kid is killed in the streets of Minneapolis; there is not much concern. I liken this to hunting or killing of an animal in the woods…the hunter sees this as sport, unfortunately for our black youth, the hunt in Minneapolis has taken far to many lives, innocent or otherwise.”

The “sport” in Minneapolis has been the idle actions of not only the black leadership, but also the public school systems and those who have given up because of systemic challenges in change.

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges, at her second state of the city address said, “Minneapolis, we don’t just need to build the workforce of the future, we need to build the workplace of the future. The expectation that if you worked hard you could get ahead is now more myth than reality for low-income people and many people of color. Even in Minneapolis, where we are famous for our class mobility, the mobility becomes very limited when we start looking at outcomes for people of color. This has to change. We can change it.”

Again, the $20 mayor has put the cart before the horse by not giving a clear path to economic agility for Minneapolis’ youth. My question to the mayor is what businesses does she run…can the mayor provide jobs? This is where the challenge of youth violence in Minneapolis begins. If the mayor of the city, to include any director of economic development has never run a business, or hired community member, they have no relationship with said community. This predicted one-term placeholder mayor would watch her city crumble in violence if she, staff and city council members do not get a handle on solutions that work…definitely not running to the usual suspects or a faulty Community Initiatives Standards (CSI).

The challenges are not totally mayor Hodges. Former Minneapolis mayor R. T. Rybak left a cornucopia of undone community engagement and solutions. The youth population of Minneapolis is employable, but there are no jobs. These youth, black and non-black need some type of structured time-management to fill their days after school and in the upcoming summer. In short, the city of Minneapolis must scrap the Step-Up Program in favor of a 2015 version of the Neighborhood Youth Corps, which is collaborations between the city and the public schools — both complicit in any violence toward black youth.

St. Paul Teacher Aaron Benner Claims Retaliation for Complaining About Discipline

Aaron Benner, a fourth grade teacher at John A. Johnson elementary school, has been speaking out against St. Paul Public Schools for the past three years. This year, he says he’s being forced out of his job.

Benner has been teaching for 20 years, but he says heat started coming down from district officials after he protested the new racial equity policy at a school board meeting last spring.

At the time, he was one of five teachers who said schools were struggling to discipline students. Those who verbally bullied other kids, physically attacked their teachers and peers and routinely ran out of their classrooms at will weren’t being reprimanded properly and they definitely weren’t being suspended, the teachers argued.

Benner says they were painted as being anti-racial equity for asking for more consequences for serious misbehavior. School let out for summer break, and “immediately with the new school year I could tell there was a target on me.”

Read the full story here. (City Pages) 

Is Barway Collins dead?

4th grader Barway Collins still missing. Fox 9 has turned all heads to his father...none to the missing boy. (photo: Fair Use - family)

4th grader Barway Collins still missing. Fox 9 has turned all heads to his father…none to the missing boy. (photo: Fair Use – family)

The Ron and Don Show alleges Fox 9 News in collaboration with an agent provocateur have been raising so much havoc the search for Barway Collins has turned into a crucifixion of the boys father, and not a search for the missing boy.

By The Ron and Don Show on BlogTalkRadio

Join the team of Ronald A. Edwards and Don Allen as they bring you up to speed on local, national and international event via BlogTalkRadio, Wednesday, March 1 at 8:30 p.m. – to listen live, click here.

A commenter on a local television station news website wrote, “All I keep thinking about is how excited he was to see his dad. “Oh cool, there’s my dad!” when he was getting off the bus; Fifteen-to-thirty minutes later Dad is seen down by the river. Waits two more hours to call the police to report him missing. Now he keeps changing his story. At the very worse, he did something horrible to this child. The very best he is hindering the investigation to find him. This is just a tragic situation.”

Indeed, the mysterious disappearance of 10-year-old Barway Collins has created a three-way social divide in the community. First, you have the African culture, which are in some cases is new to Minnesota; then you have the African American subsets that have sat on the sidelines watching closely, and we have the mainstream who cannot understand why this 4th grader has become so important.

Local media using boilerplate psychological protocol by keeping the cameras running and various news reports about the Barway’s father and how he is not really cooperating, including digging up (without any evidence) a life insurance policy that allegedly worth $30k for Barway. A reward of $12k has been levied for information that leads to an arrest and conviction of Barway’s abductors. Of course the detail are shrouded in mystery because there is no one dealing with the African culture as it pertains to the behavioral analysis of father Pierre Collins who is said to be in the area of the Mississippi River near Interstate 694 shortly after the disappearance of his 10-year-old son.

Where is the equity plan for the renovation of the city owned facility the Target Center?

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges. Show residents of Minneapolis the equity plan for the remodeling of the Target Center. (photo: Star Tribune, Google search - Fair Use)

Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges. Show residents of Minneapolis the equity plan for the remodeling of the Target Center. (photo: Star Tribune, Google search – Fair Use)

When Minneapolis mayor Betsy Hodges took office, her team developed a high-pitched tone of rhetoric behind the word “equity.” Equity as I understand it means: the relations and perceptions of fairness in distributions of resources within social and professional situations. Unfortunately, the juggernaut inside of Minneapolis is its civil rights department who cannot maintain any social or professional situations, suggestions or recommendations from a $500k report by NERA. You cannot have “equity” when the subdued and the subduer do not speak the same language.

By Don Allen, Founder – The Independent Business News Network

Minneapolis, Minn. – (March 31, 2015)…On Monday, a special committee of the Minneapolis City Council approved adding millions in public contributions to a renovation of the city owned facility the Target Center. That committee approved the higher spending on the city owned facility, which hosts concerts and sporting events.

According to WCCO-TV, an updated budget unveiled at Minneapolis City Hall this week shows the cost has climbed to nearly $129 million. That is up more than $30 million from the original projection of $97 million. The rationale for the uptick in cost is because of the construction; labor and materials have gone up.

The breakdown in dollars is the Timberwolves will contribute an addition $5 million – a total of $49 million. Under the agreement, the city of Minneapolis is paying for nearly 60 percent of the project.

The Target Center renovation Design Group has selected Dimensional Innovations to provide experiential branding, theming and wayfinding for the renovation of Target Center. The Kansas City based firm won the project after an extensive review that included design firms from around the country.

The Minneapolis Department of Civil Rights contract compliance oversight has been less than stellar in making sure people in Minneapolis, who are qualified have the opportunity to bid and work on local construction contracts.  In the summer of 2013, the MDCR, as mandated by the Minneapolis City Council was to develop an equity plan for the currently under construction Vikings stadium and this never happened.

To solve the city’s lack of fruitful engagement, the Oct. 22, 2010 report: “The State of Minority- and Women- Owned Business Enterprise: Evidence from Minneapolis and program recommendations”, that was prepared for the City of Minneapolis by NERA stated the following corrective actions:

1. Increase Vendor Communication and Outreach

Increased communication with the contracting community is critical. Minneapolis should undertake outreach efforts in addition to those conducted by the CERT Program for the local government consortium.

2. “Unbundle” Contracts

The size and complexity of the City’s contracts may be a major impediment to M/WBEs and other small firms in obtaining work as prime contractors.

3. Adopt a Small Underutilized Business Target Market Program

The City should consider adopting a Small Underutilized Business Target Market Program, whereby smaller contracts with sufficient SBE, MBE and WBE availability would be set aside for bidding as prime firms only by certified businesses.

4. Collaborate with Other Local Agencies to Provide Supportive Services for Small Firms

A key race- and gender-neutral component is supportive services for small firms.

5. Appoint a Contracting Task Force

We suggest that Minneapolis develop a regular process for firms to “talk” to the City about concerns with the SUBP’s policies, procedures and forms.

6. Improve Subcontract, Sub consultant, and Supplier Data Collection and Retention Procedures

The City’s ability to track subcontractor, sub consultant, and supplier (“subcontractor” for short) activity remains limited, not only for non-M/WBEs but also for M/WBEs in many cases.

7. Monitor Contract Performance Compliance

Minneapolis currently does not actively monitor contractors’ compliance with their commitments to utilize certified firms during the course of contract performance.

The report also suggests the City of Minneapolis adopt new race-and gender-conscious policies and procedures. The study states, “Based upon this Study, Minneapolis has a firm basis in evidence to implement a revised race- and gender-conscious SUBP. This record establishes that M/WBEs in the City’s marketplace continue to experience significant disparities in their access to private and public sector contracts and to those factors necessary for business success, leading to the inference that discrimination is a significant cause of those disparities.”

The city and it’s civil rights department have not done their due diligence in making sure the workforce on city projects are qualified and diverse. In addition, the standards and processes for substituting subcontractors should be documented and publicized. Training to all parties to the process should be provided. Finally, where contractors have breached their agreements or otherwise violated Program rules, the City should consider the imposition of liquidated damages and debarment, as provided in the SUBP ordinance.

Where’s the protest for 7 black people shot over the weekend at Florida Spring Break party?

David Jamichael Daniels, 22, of Mobile, Alabama, was charged with seven counts of attempted murder after a shooting Saturday, March 28, 2015, in Panama City Beach, Florida, according to the the Bay County Sheriff's Office.  BAY COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE/WHNT-TV

David Jamichael Daniels, 22, of Mobile, Alabama, was charged with seven counts of attempted murder after a shooting Saturday, March 28, 2015, in Panama City Beach, Florida, according to the the Bay County Sheriff’s Office. BAY COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE/WHNT-TV

By Michele Hickford, Guest Columnist – IBNN News

There is a hideous and shameful double standard from the likes of Al Sharpton and Eric Holder.

Black lives only seem to matter if they are victims of white people.

In the wee hours of this past Saturday, a gunman opened fire at a Florida spring break party, inuring seven people, three critically.

The gunman was black.

The victims were black.

Where’s the outrage? Where are the vigils? Where are the t-shirts and hashtags?

Doesn’t this matter to anyone? Heck, there’s not even a peep from the anti-gun crowd.

And of course you’ll notice in the news reports that the race of the shooter and the victims is not mentioned. You can be absolutely certain if the shooter had been white, this would be international news. But if it’s just black people shooting black people, I guess it really doesn’t matter to a lot of people.

The shooter, 22-year-old David Jamichael Daniels, of Mobile, Alabama, was been charged with seven counts of attempted murder and jailed awaiting a first court appearance. He is believed to have used a .40-caliber handgun which was found in the yard of a nearby home.

According to the Associated Press, “Sheriff Frank McKeithen said a busy party full of dancing young people dissolved into “a chaotic scene.” Daniels was free on bond on a drug possession charge in Alabama, the sheriff said, and was accompanied by two others, one who had been recovering from a gunshot wound suffered in Mobile last week.”

At least three of Daniels’ victims were critically injured: Kearria Freed, 20, who was shot in the head; Devanta Moore, 21, who was shot in the chest; and Henton Franklin, 22, who was shot in the side, according to AP.

“Three others were listed in stable condition: Jacole Young, 22, who police said was shot in the back three times; Kelli Curry, 21, who was shot in the leg; and Tykeria Ethridge, 22, who was shot in the neck and shoulder.”

“A seventh victim — Anesia Powell, 20 — was shot in the left arm, chest, and knee, and was undergoing surgery Saturday.”

Doesn’t the black community see the hypocrisy in all of this? ALL black lives should matter.

Particularly those being driven to despair through an endless cycle of broken homes, lack of faith and values, poor education, poverty, crime and the brainwashing of victimhood.

Instead of stoking the flames of racial hatred, how about stoking the passion of self-reliance, family and honor?

I know, that just doesn’t make for good television.



States universal pre-school program might crush Montessori and other family-friendly school programs

Montessori and other family-friendly school programs should be apart of any distribution of state funds.

Montessori and other family-friendly school programs should be apart of any distribution of state funds.

Governor Mark Dayton and state legislators must consider redirecting school-earmarked funding to Montessori and other local programs that prepare pre-K learners for kindergarten.

Related story: Making time for kids? Study says quality trumps quantity

IBNN News Political Brief

Minnesota…The state of Minnesota is planning to spend a lot of money that they will continue to collect in the future. Their goal is to help children be ready for kindergarten. The problem is the approach will not focus on the group that they are trying to reach.

It will cost a lot less money to send the funds with the children they are trying to reach and work with programs that are already set up in the communities. This gives parents and families flexibility in their schedule/needs and parent choice to chose the curriculum style that best meets their child’s needs. We do not want families to lose their scholarship funds.

This will affect you through taxes and may close many programs that parents rely on for younger children, including Montessori Schools.

This major proposal at the State Capitol that, if passed, could dramatically affect all Montessori Schools and the parents and children they serve.

The Governor and a group of legislative leaders are proposing to create a universal pre-school program in which school-based pre-school services would be available for free to all Minnesota 4-year olds. The proposals effectively mandate that only school-based programs would be eligible to serve families who wanted free preschool for their 4-year olds. Even high quality programs like Montessori Schools would be ineligible to provide free service to 4-year olds under this approach, even if that is what you and other parents prefer.

Could schools redirect school-earmarked funding to Montessori Schools?

No, not unless school districts surrendered the funding set aside for them by the State, which seems unlikely to happen. Therefore, in most school districts free universal pre-k for 4-year olds likely will be available only in school-based programs, but not in high quality non-profit preschool programs like Montessori Schools.

What is the impact of a schools-only mandate on families and kids?

School-based programs work for some families, but not all. For instance, mandated school-based program:

  1. a) May not be located near a parent’s job, commuting route or home;
  2. b) May not have hours that fit the parents work schedule;
  3. c) May create the need for an additional daily drop-off and pick-up for some parents with younger children; and/or
  4. c) May not offer a family’s preferred early education environment or teaching style.

What is the impact of a schools-only mandate on Montessori Schools? The loss of 4-year olds from our program could have a major impact on our ability to meet our mission and especially to serve a socioeconomically diverse population.

If you want to be heard on this issue, consider contacting your state legislators to share your opinion. Tell legislators that you want a flexible early education system that trusts parents to choose from a full range of high quality choices, not a one-size-fits all schools-only approach. This online tool will show you who your legislator is, and how to reach them.

Study investigates high discipline rates among Black girls

Is there a historic reason why black girls are punished. (Photo: Fair use)

By Camden Copeland, Guest Columnist – IBNN

Black girls are disciplined at higher rates and with harsher consequences than their White counterparts, according to a new report from Columbia Law School’s Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies.

The study, called Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out, Overpoliced and Underpotected, compares 2011-12 data on out-of-school suspensions, expulsions, and school-related arrests for White and Black girls in New York City and Boston, and explains the adverse consequences of the disparities.

The data showed that in Boston, Black girls are 11 times more likely to be disciplined than White girls and 12 times more likely to be suspended. In New York City, Black girls were 10 times more likely to be disciplined and 10 times more likely to be suspended than White girls.

According to the study, students who are suspended and face harsh disciplinary action are more likely to drop out of school. The report states, “Given the economic dependence of so many black children on a female wage earner, girls dropping out of high school is of huge socioeconomic concern.”

The study also reinforces the connection between punitive disciplinary action in schools and the school-to-prison pipeline, a trend in which students are funneled out of public schools and into the criminal justice system. Read the rest of this entry »

Fantastic Four says: Star Tribune stadium story was off the mark…Please explain “the mark” in black bodies working on the People’s Stadium

If it smells like a fart, maybe is it a fart. Some of the people in this group-write will make you think you have to pay your bar tab if you were a passenger on the Titanic. (photo – The Wrong Stuff on Facebook – Fair Use).

Sources within organized labor confirm the Vikings stadium employment fraud being perpetrated on communities of color. The person inside the Minneapolis Civil Rights Department responsible for cooking the numbers is part of the team of three individuals who provided the same type of bogus information and documentation to the Public Safety Committee of the Minneapolis City Council two weeks ago.” ~TC Daily Planet

By Don Allen, Founder – The Independent Business News Network

Minneapolis, Minn. – After reading the commentary in the Star Tribune this morning, a very familiar joke came to mind: How many black DFLer’s does it take to write a commentary for the Star Tribune? A: Four.

First, I want to make it very clear, Mr. Louis King is not at issue. The issue begins when these same group-writers fail to look at the Minnesota Department of Administration, Human Rights, MnDOT, Met Council and civil rights departments of both Minneapolis and Saint Paul with the same passion they seem to have in their protectionist post in celebration and behalf of King. This “oversight” of accountability, perpetuated forward though a likeness of Samuel L. Jackson’s character in Django Unchained telling the master, “We’s ain’t does-in nof-in wong.”

To analyze the commentary group-write in the Star Tribune that was alike and uncommon, we need to use a psychoanalytic lens. The Fantastic Four must address race related conditions governed by overseers who look like them who lead agencies and departments with egos and a sense of stratification, which they know have not functioned to the fullest for the black body in Minnesota. This is the blind spot missing from Friday’s commentary.

Furthermore, using psychoanalytic lens, according to Freud, the ego operates according to the reality principle that helps it work out realistic ways of satisfying or meeting the Id’s demands, often compromising or postponing satisfaction to avoid negative consequences of the society. The post by the Fantastic Four does not want to deal with the consequences of looking in the mirror in reverse. Society (Twin Cities) would frown on this group if they came to the realization that they knew contract compliance and enforcement lay bare to a group of friends (like-minded, political) they do not want to throw under the bus.

To further analyze, before taking any action, the ego considers social realities and norms, etiquette and rules in deciding how to behave. The action on deciding how to behave, or in this case respond to the Star Tribune story was to have four to respond simply because there is no “one” in the black community who could fulfill the singular task of “representation.”

Without targeting any single person by name in the Fantastic Four group-write, only two of the writers have a relationship with the community and black people. The other two sit with the bougie – aspiring to be a higher class seeking to comply, assimilate and confirm their sense of whiteness – a sense that is impossible for them to achieve. What this group really needs to do is turn towards senators Bobby Joe Champion and Jeff Hayden with inquires of any unethical behavior. This includes children out of wedlock, nonprofit mismanagement, political bullying and attempting actions close to violations of the RICO Act in the black community.

If this group were sincere, they would have asked and answered the one most important question:

  1. How many black bodies are working, or have worked on the Vikings Stadium from zip codes 55405, 55411, 55407, 55408 and 55409?

This friend is the billion-dollar question that none of the Fantastic Four will answer, or seek answers to.

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