Today’s Black Voices, Black Choices feature is from a mom who is doing everything she can to get the best education for her children. Every day she gets her four children to three different schools – one selective enrollment school, a magnet school and a charter school – so that they each can get an education that is suited to their particular needs. While some people in our city seek to engage in ugly debates about which school governance and enrollment models are the best, parents and families are leveraging their available options and calling for funding equity regardless of location or school type.
Meet LaShanda Howard:
What is your dream for your children’s education?
My dreams for my children’s education is to always be learning, to attend competitive schools, study with competitive people to successfully accomplish their goals and dreams in life.
Where do you send your child to school and how did you make that choice?
My Children attend 3 different schools – Lindblom Math and Science, Pershing Magnet, UCW University of Chicago Woodlawn. I made the choices based on the strengths of the schools and the needs of my children. I also considered selective enrollment testing and resources offered, such as multiple languages, habits of life learning (HOLLS) curriculum, college tours, scholarships, etc.
How does your own education experience and background impact the decision you make for your children?
My own education experience impacts my decision because I didn’t have the support or resources to adequately prepare me for college. Not knowing or having the right information cost me a lot of time and money. I do not want my children to face that same reality.
What is the name of your favorite teacher and why are was s/he your favorite?
Mr. Edgerden, was my 4th grade Math teacher, he had such a passion for math. He made it fun and easy to learn.
What is one thing you wish decision makers understood about educating your child and other Black children?
I wish decision makers understood that we need equal funding in order to create equal opportunities to learn. Regardless of where we live, we should be able to learn, grow and develop using the same successful strategies as Wilmette, and New Trier school districts.
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