National educational consultant Dr. Gloria Ladson-Billings will be the featured keynote speaker at Edgewood College’s “Dreaming In Ethnic Melodies Black History Education Conference,’ which will be held on February 21-22, 2020 at Edgewood College, the Overture Center, the Madison Concourse Hotel, and the Wisconsin Historical Society.
“Dreaming In Ethnic Melodies” will have a strong emphasis on social and emotional learning, and universal literacy instruction under six African-American categories of children’s literature. Dr. Billing’s keynote will focus on “Dreaming With Our Eyes Open: Cultivating Hope in Black Children.”
“As recently reported by the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the performance gap between black and white students continues to widen in the state of Wisconsin,” Tony Garcia, Executive Director of Diversity and Inclusion at Edgewood College, said in a statement. “Locally here in Madison, we continue to see K-12 and higher education institutions struggle with creating equitable learning opportunities for diverse students. The importance and timeliness of this conference cannot be overstated and we are eager to welcome educators from across the state of Wisconsin to engage in meaningful dialogue on how best to promote and model academic excellence.”
Ladson-Billings was a faculty member on the University of Wisconsin-Madison campus for more than 26 years and held the Kellner Family Distinguished Chair in Urban Education. She was a professor with the departments of Curriculum and Instruction, Educational Policy Studies, and Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis. She is also currently serving a four-year term as president of the National Academy of Education. Last year, the American Educational Research Association’s Division B honored Ladson-Billings with a Lifetime Achievement Award at their Annual Meeting in New York City.
Sessions during the “Dreaming In Ethnic Melodies Black History Education” will focus on nine cultural values that promote self-love and identity development, address how to utilize culturally relevant pedagogical approaches, highlight successful family engagement practices, share culturally relevant leadership strategies, demonstrate the importance of utilizing the arts to increase the possibilities for our collective behavioral and academic outcomes, and draw on student’s personal experiences.
“The conference experience is intended to provide a venue where educators from across the state and country will be able to share policies, practices, programs, and procedures that have proven effective in promoting high levels of achievement for those often being underserved in our school systems,” Andreal Davis, conference creator and CEO of Cultural Practices That Are Relevant Consulting, said in a press release. “Continuing to think with the idea of ‘communalism’ in mind, we are asking attendees to open heads, hands and hearts to collaborate and to close the stark gaps that exist for many of the students and families that we serve in our community and across the country.”
To learn more about the conference and to register, click here.