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Queensbridge Community In Action

Award Recipients - 1999

Yvette Grissom, Hollis Jackson, Donna Steele, Co-Founders

Yvette Grissom, Hollis Jackson, Donna Steele created Queensbridge Community in Action (QCIA) to improve community involvement in public education and to hold district schools accountable for their responsibility in educating children.  Since 1998, QCIA has held community meetings on school policy, parents’ rights, school resources and the public education hierarchy. 
QCIA began with a campaign at a neighborhood school designated by the State Department of Education as low performing and cited by the Federal  Department of Education Office of Civil Rights for referring a disproportionate number of African American and Latino children to Special Education.  QCIA organized a meeting between Queensbridge residents and the school’s principal.  At the meeting, parents asked the principal to reasons in writing to their recommendations.  When she failed to do so, they pursued a meeting with the District Superintendant, who agreed to meet with them on a regular basis to discuss ongoing concerns.  As a result, the school now provides leadership training for parents as well as childcare and Spanish translation at all meeting.  QCIA parents vow to continue to knock on every door in the Queensbridge Housing Projects to organize so that every child in the community receives a quality education.

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