Geoffrey Canada to Headline Chicago Education Summit Geoffrey Canada to Headline Chicago Education Summit
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Geoffrey Canada to Headline Chicago Education Summit

by Liz Dwyer

November 19, 2010

Can Geoffrey Canada's education-reform blueprint transform public school in Chicago? Canada, the CEO of the Harlem Children's Zone and one of the stars of the education documentary Waiting for Superman, is set to add his two cents to the Second City's education reform conversation by keynoting "Be a Superhero for Education," an education summit hosted by the United Way of Chicago on Wednesday, November 17.

Laura Thrall, the CEO of the United Way, told Chicago's Fox 11 that her organization's involvement came about because they're the social action partner for the documentary Waiting for Superman. Thrall says nothing will change in Chicago schools by pointing fingers, and the summit isn't out to pit teachers unions against charter school advocates. Instead, with only 54 percent of the city's high school students graduating, Thrall wants to, "bring people together, connect the dots," and get schools fixed. 

The summit also intends to get Chicago's faith-based community engaged. Mike Rolfes of the Park Community Church told Fox 11 he believes Canada's message will be that education reform is difficult, but the results are worth the effort.

Rolfes said eight churches will co-host the summit and an additional twenty congregations will be in attendance. Rolfes hopes the summit will serve as catalyst for the city's church-going population, as well as parents, community members and educators, to step up and do something about their neighborhood schools.

The event is free and open to the public, and more than 1,000 attendees are expected.

Photo (cc) via The Aspen Institute

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Geoffrey Canada to Headline Chicago Education Summit