Hundreds of people advocated for education reform in north Tulsa Monday morning.
The summit took place at Metropolitan Baptist Church. Speakers presented evidence that lower-performing communities stand to have the most to gain from religious organizations helping out.
“Folks have been unwilling to engage in this fight,” said Roland Martin.
Martin travels the country pushing for improvements in education.
He said that Monday through Friday, kids congregate in school, but on weekends the best place to catch them all is in church.
“Schools are community-based, churches are community-based, and so when you have those two operating hand in hand, you’re able to communicate a lot more efficiently,” he said.
The summit highlighted statistics about education within black communities specifically.
For example, Martin said 4 out of every 5 are not reading at a proficient level in fourth grade.
The Rev. Ray Owens said as the leader of a predominantly black church, he’s especially concerned.
“We want to do our part as community stakeholders to connect with administration, school administration, teachers to push forward the needle for educating black children,” said Owens.
Owens said Oklahoma has a tough time keeping quality educators, and even fewer want to teach in the low-performing areas.
SOURCE: FOX 23 – Farron Salley