AFC and LFC release statement in celebration of Black History Month
The American Federation for Children, the nation’s voice for educational choice, and its state affiliate, the Louisiana Federation for Children, celebrates the beginning of Black History Month and recognizes importance of educational choice nationwide.
AFC founding board member, Kevin P. Chavous, released the following statement:
“Earlier this year, Martin Luther King III spoke at a rally in Florida and expressed the need for choice in education and said his father, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., would support choice because it’s ‘the right thing to do. We should continue to carry this message with us as we celebrate Black History Month and throughout the year.’
“Education inequality is single most important civil rights issue our nation faces today. The education many minority children receive through the current system is failing them and likewise failing the community. We are losing young black boys and girls who are becoming statistics instead of reaching their full potential in the classroom and beyond.’
“I am proud to stand in the fight for educational choice, and on the right side of history, to give every child access to quality educational options and empower parents with the ability to do what’s best for their child.”
LFC President, Ann Duplessis, released the following statement:
“In 1960, six-year-old Ruby Bridges became the first African-American child to attend an all-white public elementary school in the South when she was escorted by U.S. marshals into William Frantz School in New Orleans. Fifty-six years later, families in New Orleans and communities across America are still living with the same problem. They face a barrier – access to quality education.’
“Previously, the civil rights battle in education was for equal access to the school buildings. Now, five decades later and having gained entry into the building, the question now is: ‘what is the quality of the education inside?’’
“Today, America’s educational playing field is nowhere near level. The National Urban League’s ‘2015 State of Black America’ report described an education system that is separate and unequal in terms of expectations and resources, that continues to break down along economic and color lines.’
“Providing access to quality education is one of today’s most important civil rights issues. As president of the Louisiana Federation for Children, I am proud to promote educational choice by protecting, growing and expanding school choice options for low and middle-income children in our state.”
American Federation for Children is the nation’s leading school choice advocacy organization and works in states across the country to help secure additional, high-quality educational options for families.
Kevin P. Chavous is executive counsel and a founding board member for the American Federation for Children, an affiliate of the American Federation for Children Growth Fund. A noted attorney, author, and national school reform leader. A former member of the Council of the District of Columbia and a former chairman of D.C.’s Education Committee, Chavous was responsible for enacting numerous education reforms in D.C. Chavous is chair emeritus of the Democrats for Education Reform and a former chair of the Black Alliance for Educational Options.
Ann Duplessis is a former Louisiana state legislator where she served on the Senate Education Committee and fought successfully to expand educational options for Louisiana’s children by authoring and supporting numerous pieces of school choice legislation. Duplessis resides in New Orleans and remains active in numerous civic activities.