In Washington, D.C., an area where black male students are the lowest-performing demographic on standardized tests, one Belmont alum is committed to empowering his students. Michael Redmond (’13), a graduate of Belmont’s Masters of Arts in Teaching program and a current Doctoral student at George Washington University, is the assistant principal at Truesdell Education Campus. He recently helped students on his campus organize an all-male book club which meets a few times a week before school starts to discuss their reading and their own experiences with race, identity and adolescence. His efforts have recently been featured in the Washington Post.
Since the inception of Redmond’s book club, a similar club has been instituted for girls with the same appetite for reading. These groups have become the most popular clubs at the school, and students are moving quickly through the books lined up for them. “It’s a blessing to be in this predicament, to have kids who are becoming ravenous readers,” Redmond said. “We’re disrupting the notion of what public education can be and what little black boys can do and be.”