District hosts national conference on minority achievement
Heights High seniors Jaylin Coleman, Jaylen Chesney and Christine Roberts were part of the 15-member Minority Student Achievement Network (MSAN) student leadership team that planned MSAN’s national conference. Hosted by the Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District, the conference took place Oct. 18–21 at a Beachwood hotel.
The leadership team worked with Heights High’s three MSAN advisors, O’Dasha Blue, Shawn Washington and Nate Williams; the district’s Educational Services Department; and MSAN national staff, based in Madison, Wis. They selected keynote speakers, outlined the action planning process and icebreaker activities, and organized the talent show and college visits to Cleveland State University, Case Western Reserve University, and Kent State University.
There are 70 students in the Heights High MSAN club. Approximately 260 elementary, middle and high schools students attended the conference, from 21 school districts, including Cambridge, Mass., and Princeton, N.J.
Conference attendees discussed the barriers that students of color face in their schools and districts, networked with students from across the country to craft solutions, shared ideas about how to motivate students and staff to meet their potential, and developed action plans to implement their ideas when they return home.
MSAN is a national coalition of multiracial, suburban-urban school districts that works to eliminate the achievement opportunity gaps in schools. The CH-UH City School District is a founding member of the organization, and hosted its first national conference in 2000.
Joy Henderson is the parent/community liaison for Heights High.