Best Speaker of the Day: Harvard’s Karen Mapp

Karen Mapp of Harvard’s Graduate School of Education was one of the best speakers at today’s Summit on Educational Excellence for African Americans.

Karen Mapp from Harvard's Graduate School of Education
Karen Mapp from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education

JACKSON, Miss– She wasn’t listed to give a keynote speech, but in showcasing the Academic Parent Teacher Team or APT Team that have been successful in the Creighton School District in Arizona, Karen Mapp grabbed my attention and seemed to dominate the panel discussion about strategies for “Empowering Parents, Guardians and Caring Adults.”

The former deputy superintendent of the Boston Public Schools now works as a lecturer in the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

She explained what the whole idea behind “parent choice” is all about.

“Choice doesn’t always mean equity, “Mapp said.  “Choice doesn’t always mean a good match.”

As we look for ways to effectively mentor African American boys back in Tuscaloosa, I know I’ll be drawing on some of Professor Mapp’s ideas on proficiency on family engagement and parent involvement.

I’m looking forward to seeing more of her ideas in Beyond the Bake Sale: The Essential Guide to Family/School Partnerships.


Author: George Daniels

George L. Daniels is an associate professor of journalism at the University of Alabama. After spending eight years in the local television newsroom working as a producer at stations in Richmond, Virginia; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Atlanta, Georgia, Daniels moved from the newsroom to the classroom. He’s conducted research on diversity issues in the media workplace and change in the television newsroom as well as media convergence. Before going to work in television news, Daniels worked briefly as a freelance writer for The Richmond Free Press in his hometown of Richmond, Va.

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