APPLE's back at Brooks with goal of closing black achievement gap

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Lisa Brown

Resurrected after four years, African American Parents for Purposeful Leadership in Education (APPLE), was officially renewed at Gwendolyn Brooks Middle School on Wednesday, Oct. 9, during its introductory meeting.
Brooks principal Flora Green, along with more than 25 parents, gathered to agree on goals, strategies and actionable steps to provide educational support and resources to African-American children and their parents at the middle school.
"I am especially proud to be affiliated with such a positive initiative and was pleased to see so many parents attend our first meeting. It is a sign of good things to come," said Edye Deloch-Hughes, president of Brooks APPLE.  "Gwendolyn Brooks wasn't built in a day, so the process of organizing APPLE will take time as well.  However, our first goal is to get the tutoring and mentoring components established this semester. With the parents help and support, we can make this happen."  
Green said she wants even more parents to get involved in the group. "Gwendolyn Brooks APPLE will really shine if everyone participates in making it shine.  No matter what academic position a child is in, he or she will benefit greatly from the support of APPLE."
The mission of Brooks' APPLE is to offer a strong hand in helping close the African-American achievement gap and is dedicated to closing the gap by the following steps: offering tutoring and mentoring programs, increasing parental involvement, presenting strategies to ease transition from middle school to high school, facilitating better communication between parents, teachers and students, sharing resources and information, implementing programs and events, executing fundraising initiatives, developing partnerships with businesses, legislators and the community, and communicating initiatives to parents, educators and the community.
"It takes a village to raise a child.  Therefore, we are committed to recruiting parents, volunteers and local area businesses dedicated towards realizing this mission and who are willing to share their resources," Deloch-Hughes said.  "Developing partnerships with the community-at-large is very important, however, given today's hectic schedules, APPLE understands some can only do a little, while others can do a lot.  We don't want volunteers and parents to bite off more of APPLE than they can chew, but we do want them to give it a taste." 
For more information on how to volunteer, call Rochelle Hill, public relations committee chair, at 660-0560.

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