Insight News

Aug 29th


September Technology programs at Hennepin County Library

Back-to-lifelong-learning programs for all ages are scheduled in September at Hennepin County libraries, including storytimes, computer classes, job and small business programs, multicultural programs, author talks, programs for aspiring writers, and other events.  All programs are free.

Hennepin County Library offers access to about 5 million books, CDs, DVDs, electronic resources, and other items in more than 40 languages, plus 1,775 public computers. 

The following technology programs are scheduled in September at local libraries.  For Hennepin County Library's complete program schedule, go online to

Hennepin County Library - East Lake
2727 E. Lake St., Minneapolis, 952-847-8425


Local and National Parent and Community Coalitions urge Congress to support new plan for “Turnaround” schools

Coalition plan details successful, sustainable reform that will strengthen America’s schools

Minnesota Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC) recently joined with Communities for Excellent Public Schools (CEPS), a new national coalition of community-based organizations composed of parents and students in low-income communities from across the country, to unveil a new comprehensive plan for successful, sustainable reform of the nation’s chronically underperforming schools and a report on schools that are eligible for federal turnaround intervention.

With the release of the coalition’s Sustainable School Transformation Plan and the report, “Our Communities Left Behind,” NOC members called for replacing the Administration’s proposals with the coalition’s research-based best practices to help transform underperforming schools in the Twin Cities.

Stedman’s steps to success

Stedman’s steps to successStedman Graham - The “Athletes Against Drugs” Interview

Stedman Graham was born on March 6, 1951, in Whitesboro, NJ, a community founded in 1901 by a group of prominent African Americans which included Booker T. Washington and Paul Laurence Dunbar. Stedman attended Middle Township High School where the 6’6” phenom starred on the varsity basketball team. After earning a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Hardin-Simmons University, he played professionally in Europe for a few years before returning to the U.S. to work on his Master’s in Education from Ball State.

An enduring, high-profile relationship with Oprah Winfrey has, perhaps, overshadowed the long list of business and charitable accomplishments accumulated over the course of Graham’s impressive career as Chairman and CEO of S. Graham & Associates, a management and marketing consulting firm specializing in the corporate and educational fields. A prolific writer, he is also the author of ten books, two of which became NY Times bestsellers. And he has taught at several colleges, including a course on leadership at the University of Illinois and one on strategic management at Northwestern.

Metropolitan State appoints interim dean

Metropolitan State appoints interim deanDaniel Abebe, Saint Paul, dean of Metropolitan State University’s First College, was named interim dean of the university’s College of Professional Studies. The appointment is effective July 1. He is replacing Dr. Carmen Coballes-Vega who left July 1 to assume the provost’s position at Hostos College, City University of New York. A search to fill the position on a permanent basis will be conducted during the 2010–2011 academic year, during which time Abebe will lead both colleges.

Abebe will provide programmatic, administrative and budgetary leadership for the College of Professional Studies, including oversight of curricular development and faculty recruitment and evaluation. The college offers undergraduate programs in alcohol and drug counseling, early childhood studies, urban early childhood education, urban elementary education, human services, psychology and social work. It also provides graduate programs in psychology.

Judge Tanya Bransford: A Minnesota African She-ro

Judge Tanya Bransford: A Minnesota African She-roOften times when African Americans teach their children about their incredible history and culture and the tremendous contribution that people of African descent have made to the United States and the world, they forget to teach their children about the giant heroes and she-roes that are right here in Minnesota.

For the last several years, WE WIN Institute, Inc has been teaching Black children, ages 5-18, about the enormous impact that African Americans in Minnesota have made. Living in a state that has a Black population of less than 5 percent, it is essential that African American children have a thorough understanding of the contributions of people who look like them.

Students in WE WIN’s summer program studied the life of Judge Tanya Bransford. Reading materials about the judge were developed for the five-year-olds and the 15-year-olds. They discussed her life, answered questions and drew her pictures.

Introducing the new Superintendent of Schools

Introducing the new Superintendent of SchoolsAs your new Superintendent of Minneapolis Public Schools, I am extremely hopeful for the future and excited to lead our efforts to raise academic achievement for all students. I believe more strongly than ever that our top priorities lie in narrowing the achievement gap and offering all of our students a high-quality education that prepares them for college and/or a career.

During the summer, we are busy. We are working to find new ways to increase student achievement. Summer is a wonderful time to make learning fun and interesting for children. Summer school classes began June 28. Our summer school programs for elementary and middle school students target the areas of reading and math through an exciting new curriculum: Seeds of Science, Roots of Reading. The summer programs we offer also incorporate activities such as canoe trips and visits to local parks and museums. The courses accelerate learning, expand vocabulary and provide students with a hands-on approach in the classroom.

The Importance of the SATs and PSATs

Many colleges and universities require a standardized test such as the SAT or ACT for admissions.  The reason colleges and universities require these tests is to have a consistent way of measuring students who are applying to the school.

The Scholastic Aptitude Test, or SAT, is usually taken your junior and/or senior year.  It is better to take it your junior year so that you can re-take it if you don’t like your score and want to improve it.  This test, most of the time, is a major part of your overall college application.  To help prepare for the SAT, students take the Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test or PSAT.  This test is offered every October, and can be taken your freshman, sophomore, and/or junior year.  The SAT occurs from October to June (check for specific dates).
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