On June 16th, we gathered for our final PAAC Durham meeting and celebration to close out another school year. We would like to publicly thank all the Black parents/guardians who chose to be a part of the Parents of African American Children Committees in their school. Some notable programming and advocacy include:

  • Over 70% of schools who have formed PAAC Committees have had Racial Equity Teams formed in their school after the formation of PAAC.
  • PAAC members have been asked to serve in leadership positions on the School Improvement Team and on the Executive Boards of their PTA.
  • The PAAC Community event at Easley had the greatest school engagement and connecting to Black culture and building community amongst all parents.
  • Over 100 participants in the Black Parent Empowerment Workshop discussing access to advanced academics.
  • Durham Public Schools Director of Equity Affairs shared the disaggregated data by school of enrollment in AP courses and Math I in Middle School.
  • Created a PAAC Reading Corner inclusive of culturally diverse books with parents and children reading during the school’s Literacy Night.
  • PAAC advocated for more diversity in teaching staff, and school administration is considering a diverse hiring committee.
  • PAAC advocated to use resources to allow for 3 of their teachers/administrators to attend the 3- day we are (working to extend anti-racist education) Educator Summer Institute.
  • PAAC gave leadership to the contribution of over 20 culturally diverse books to be included in their school media center.
  • Virtual Summer Literacy Series: In order to provide opportunities for engagement and reading during the pandemic over the summer, P-town PAAC hosted a series of virtual Lunchtime Literacy sessions in June with local, nationally renowned author Kelly Starling Lyons.
  • Post-COVID pandemic a PAAC mom, specifically, started a book club for students interested in reading books and watching the corresponding Netflix movies together.
  • In an effort to recognize the accomplishment of transitioning to online learning and the success of completing elementary school, our PAAC, along with the school counselor Aja Johnson, sponsored and moderated a “Rights of Passage,” zoom meeting for 4th and 5th graders to talk with Club alumni who have already transitioned to middle school. The conversation spanned expectations for academics, athletics all the way to clubs/social activities and time management.
  • There were additional community building events planned similar to previous years, like the Black Student Union at Jordan High School’s Black History Celebration and the Black business expo at Creekside Elementary School that were cancelled due to COVID and the abrupt closure of schools.

The “PAAC Chairs of the Year” exemplified by consistent leadership, innovation, bridging relationships and recruiting PAAC members to be connected went to Pearsontown Elementary School:

Co-Chair, Devin Brown
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Co-Chair, Pam Diggs
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The “PAAC Committee of the Year” exemplified through consistent PAAC programming, integrating PAAC with school programming and advocating for using a Race Equity Lens in everything went to Club Blvd Elementary.

Both schools, Pearsontown and Club will receive a $50 grant from EPiC to their school PTA. Congratulations!!!