Posts Tagged ‘Milwaukee Public Schools’


Call it another exclusive.

Since 2016, the Milwaukee Public Schools has been doing an intuitive of a thing called Rethinking High Schools. Part of this is engaging a group of folks that know the feeling of that previous work, the Alumni.

Us Alumni in the MPS world have been long forgotten in terms of the Students, Staff and Parents whom seem to be the bulk of Milwaukee’s largest school district. In 2015, there was a meeting at my old high school about this intuitive, and it was good to see the various ideas then to flow. But until 2016, as we knew, that changed a step further. It changed with the first MPS Alumni Reunion in which many of the MPS High School attended the Bradley Center and greeted by the dignitaries, and even Mayor Tom Barrett.

From there, we even had a Alumni Summit in discussing about our Alumni Associations and various ways to reach out. Plus even we discussed about the name changes of the schools, such as why John Marshall High School became “Morse*Marshall” and the reasons behind it. Not a very good one by the way. Even we discussed about those wanting to start an Alumni Association or Foundation that involves commitment from those that want to keep them open and active. We also had networking series events, Alumni luncheons/picnics as well as Panel Questions/Answers at the MPS Headquarters.

That was in the first two years since the idea was launched. And it worked.

Callout: Now the question is: why does this matter? Why now this idea? And also why didn’t we didn’t get this treatment when we were coming up in MPS?

This should matter to a point that the MPS Alumni Forever Family is part of the community. We are in our careers, families, activities and yes we do hold our titles to a prompt thought. We have been long forgotten in other means, but I think it’s time to celebrate us no matter where we are.

Why now this idea, you asked? Again it’s about us. If we can celebrate our kids and parents of the Milwaukee Public Schools, as well as teachers, principals, staff workers, recreation in all, even other schools; this also SHOULD include the Alumni. Many of us whom are alums probably have connections to MPS in some point based on experience, lessons and also support. As former students.

And why didn’t we get this treatment when we were coming up? Easy answer. It was never thought about. It was never indicated to the times that we had those great times in High School and frankly it was never invented the thought that MPS should create an Alumni Group for every alum that has graduated from Milwaukee’s largest school district.

I mean if the Colleges and Universities can do this, and they do this a lot as we know based on the mailings, emails, Social Media Posts in all, why not Milwaukee Public Schools? I mean we got successful alums in medicine, politics, journalism, science, architecture, business ownership, ministry, and many more areas of work we are currently in. We know this very well.

And I have to say that yes, MPS has problems. MPS has issues. And MPS has concerns with the Teachers, Staff Workers and most of all: our Kids! As an alum of the district, yes I recalled that MPS had concerns about Me. But however as I looked back, even though I had to highs and lows from grades to activities. And a one time suspension from fighting of being provoked and bullied in High School. Overall, I survived being a Milwaukee Public School Student. And I’m sure that many had survived that as well. The thing is many forget that yes, there are good things that MPS provides. And there are bad things. Just like the real world. Do I think about the bad things about the District? All the time. But I also remember the good as well.

So what can I expect at this new year of the Milwaukee Public Schools Alumni thing? What can I expect this year overall even more?

First I think that the idea must flow and continue into every single Milwaukee Public High School Alumni Association and Foundation. Period. They are the foundation for the MPS Alumni and hopefully they are the way to get those whom are engaged, stay engaged.

Second, the younger alumni must work! Like every group from Churches to Organized companies, even Alumni groups must need to have young folks. This is an Achilles Heel in all groups. If we want groups to survive, it’s the need for the younger alums to continue. Now I heard they don’t do Alumni Council Meetings, or be at a Reunion full of older folks. But what do they really want to see? They are MPS Alumni folks too and they need to be at the table voicing their ideas to support. For you younger MPS Alums between 18-35, we need to hear you. We know this is not your thing, but still we need to hear what you have to say. Seriously. Fill us in! There was talks about an idea of having their own Reunion Get Together. Have them! Organize it. But the seasoned vets would like to stop by and give you some tips to keep the Alumni ship going. Hear them out of respect.

And also: this needs to be said, if you say you would to come out and do this and that, and don’t put in the work, that is a problem! Regarding reunions, events and planning. Take notes, young Alumni!

Back in 2011 when my old high school was about to turn the golden age of 50, I was selected to be a new board member at 34 years old. And the date: May 2nd, 2011. 7 years to the date. I’ve worked my way up the ladder and I’m still learning. Plus I serve as a treasurer. I take pics and go to my 90’s reunions and share those whom are not familiar with that decade to give them some insight of who we are and what we did. And here is the kicker, for a while, my Alma Mater’s Alumni group never had anyone from the 1990’s to represent as a board member. But that changed in 2011 when I joined. Again, at 34 years old. And I’m from the Class of 1995. Go figure.

Now for all those that escaped from Wisconsin to go to Texas, Georgia, Illinois, California, New York, Tennessee, or even overseas. If you’re just now looking at this, and still asking what this is, and you are living in your new digs, and still are just wondering what this is: yes you’re missing out! But you can still support your alumni groups.

If I were one of you, I would go to this site right now: www.mpsalumnihub.com

This is the website for the MPS Alumni that has all the information in regarding the reunions, profiles, Alumni Directory, and other events.

Another is social media. If you haven’t killed your Facebook Page or Twitter handles you should be following them via MPS. Including Instagram.

Plus since many in the Alumni has a JOB, and likes to DONATE, this is an idea from one of my uncles who is an MPS Alum: “If I don’t come, I will donate!” I urge you the transplants of the MPS Alumni (as well as living in the state) to donate to the MPS Foundation or even donate to your Alumni Associations/Foundations to whatever area of the school you want. For example, if I lived let’s say…..Utah, and I’m just now reading about the MPS Alumni stuff and I can’t make it to a Networking event, or the Alumni Reunion due to distance in all, I would EXTREMELY donate to the cause of music of my Alma Mater or MPS! And I remember being in Band Classes back in the day. I’ll either send in a check or pay online. Why is that so hard? It’s not! You pay your bills online in all, right? You tithe online to your church, right? Why not this?

Folks, newsflash: It’s not rocket science.

One of the things about the ongoing suggestions that if you are going to be apart of this, it needs to be pushed and examined.

Pushed as to a point to let those know of what is going on in their Alma Maters. I’ll bet many others are asking, “How is the school now after 30 years since I’ve been gone?” Or “Does the school do drill squads, or music?” “Does it still have a football team?” Or, how can we the Alumni support this cause of Education of the school? We know this. We hear it all the time!

Examined as an example to preview and attempt to take part in some sort or many capacity. Now a days, when folks hear about certain events, or groups, they need to see it. Show the receipts, as the young folks would say. If a person that is interested in their Alma Mater Alumni Committee, and/or the MPS Alumni Hub to support or partake, I think he or she needs to see what’s going on. I think they need to ask questions, get information about the status of the Alumni Groups, even if they never heard of one. I think all Alumni Groups needs to have meetings, specifically interest meetings with the Alums to get a clarity of who they are dealing with. From the Chairperson, President on down. They need to see faces, and shake hands. And yes, Skyping.

They also need to go out into the community, particularly the school’s community to the events or meetings and support ideas of fundraising or services. If it’s for a Football Team, or a Jazz Ensemble it does not matter. Even if it’s a bake sale or a Open House, go and do it. Let them know that you (the Alumni) are here to donate your time and money to support this cause. The faces will lit up! Trust me. Many schools do have websites, and again Social Media Pages. Feel free to explore them! If they have an alumni page online, check that out also! If they have an Alumni Badge Lapel or shirt, wear that everywhere you go! Also let the future Alums know at their graduation ceremonies, and grad parties!

Even if you hear about a class reunion or another some sort of get together announcement, see if you can attend and get a table for the Alumni Association.

*Sidenote: Alumni Associations/Foundations, you might want to update your online pages to keep current of the news and contacts. JUST A THOUGHT!!!!!!!!

This is an also an idea: If you are an MPS Alum that is out of state, and the MPS Alumni Reunion is going on, take a pic of yourself with the school colors/MPS Alumni Lapel Pin. Let them know you represent the school district that gave you your first break! And it doesn’t matter where you are working. Even send a video message!

If you are in the working world and a MPS Alumni Member, guess what? You can network! You might want to do that to keep potential and future alums engaged in the company you are working in. Colleges do it all the dang time! Even network with clubs and organizations like Fraternities and Sororities. Veterans Clubs, Rotary Clubs, Elk Clubs, American Legion Family, Toastmasters, and more. How many of the MPS Alumni are in these organizations? And still active?

*Second Sidenote: If you are asking about a milestone reunion or a ideal reunion, and heard nothing back about it, you need to organize and also get assistance from the Alumni Association/Foundation. That goes for everyone!

Finally as I close, with the 3rd Annual MPS Alumni Reunion is coming up on Mother’s Day Weekend, I hope that the ideas would continue to flow beyond the event. I know that there will be pics taken and memories added. And contacts made. However, after the event is over, I also hope that the event would encourage others who have not yet came out once to actually try. This is still a young event, but eventually it will grow and be successful. And it has to start with the foundation of us Alumni to begin the engagement!

Plus I’ll save a piece for the Class of 2018 after they graduate!

Advertisements

Usually around this time, I want to tell the 2017 Graduation Classes Congrats. That will come in the next two blogs. But right now, a three way dance is looking and it’s about the stuff that my homecity is going through.

First Dance: Milwaukee Youth, Stop all this mess!

On Facebook today through one of my local DJs page, there was a shared footage about two teenage girls were about to engage in a fight. They duked out. Then the teenage boys later on got in and fought the girls on the spot. This footage I saw where a bunch of girls and boys jumped into a fight, by taking it to the extreme is nothing but more trouble brewing. Of course we can talk about Juneteenth Day about the jubilation of us black folks being all Melanin Proud and free. We can. I’m going to start a #MelaninManic hashtag. But what I saw on this footage on Facebook is nothing to be proud of. It’s not! We see this stuff everyday when the news comes on and oh “Milwaukee School Students fighting again. I’m pulling my child out of the school system!” You can pull your child out of MPS for example, but there will be more problems and concerns. Right now, MPS is on Summer Vacation to about August 14th. But when I saw this footage about the boys jumping in and taking their liberties I have to ask this, where are these dudes fathers at? I know that Father’s Day came and went, but these BOYS need their FATHERS! And I know many go in on the boys being no good because of their father’s behavior from years ago before all of this happens. Of course I can blame them, and partially the Mother’s can be at fault too! Where did the upbringing went too? Broken homes! There it is. If that were me in that mess, I would be spanked at home. Punishments. NO TV, NO INTERNET,  NO VIDEO GAMES, NO FACEBOOK. NONE!  And no, there are NO EXCUSES! Your actions will spell it out for you. Ok so the young black males put their liberties on the black girls because either they thought it was funny, or maybe one of the girls jumped their sister or cousin and they went in even further. That right there, is also dumb. The thing is, these fights that you the younger folks that want to be highly successful later on, things like this will be RECORDED and many will wonder why should I hire this person, when this person was a teen beating up girls in a useless fight? And oh, you get mad and get passed up on a job interview. I know many us grown folks had been there, but there are of us having this convo about “What can I do to help these kids?” My question as a “Melanin Grown Black King”, what haven’t we tried yet? When I attended the 46th NCJ-Black Methodist for Church Renewal’s Convention last year in Milwaukee, we had a group discussion about the concerns of our communities, and one of the concerns was brought up about was about talking with our young people. That’s true! WE NEED TO TALK TO OUR YOUNG FOLKS! Not just on the computer, or in a video game chatroom. Face to face. Women to Girls, Men to Boys, and I dare say, Women to Boys and Men to Girls. Yes I said this! Grown folks, we need to stop being “friends” to our young folks. Mothers and Fathers, stop being friends with your kids and start being REAL FREAKING PARENTS! Many of you aren’t real parents because your parents were better than you! And you didn’t listen. Well, you say that these kids are getting crazy, but when I see these kids messing up, your parental game is messed up. YES I said it! Get it right! Don’t kill the messenger!

Second Dance: A family gets kicked out for being too loud, at a Brewers Game.

Right now, the Milwaukee Brewers are in the top rankings in the National League Central Division. They are playing good baseball as of late with Eric Thames smacking homeruns.

But that’s not what this is about. Most recently, a hispanic family was at a Brewers game, and they were enjoying their team playing. But the scene changed when some white baseball fans flipped off the kids. Sad! What’s even worst than that, they were escorted out of the Ball Park all because they were “cheering too loud”. Keep in mind, they were kids! Young folks whom were cheering for their favorite team! I’ve gone to Baseball Games, Basketball Games, Football Games, even WWE Wrestling Matches and children were cheering loud at those events. I didn’t front nor told them to hush up. Many are looking at this being an angle of racism. If that’s the case, the Milwaukee Brewers need to address that. Seriously. In a Facebook post, the mother of the boys expressed the concern, and yes she had to go there.

https://m.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=1662286440471404&id=100000701917637

Now let me get this straight. So kids or fans of baseball can’t cheer at their favorite teams? This ain’t no rocket science. This is just them having a good time . Period. For those “fans” who like to flip off with racism at a bunch of kids at a ballpark, a dome, a soccer field, a whatever field, you plainly SUCK! And mixing that with racism is just that: stupid. And of course when kids see that they might get traumaized and they might be effected with all the situation at hand. AGAIN, they are children! They didn’t deserve that and neither the family! NONE. Stuff like this is very inexcusable and it’s not fair. No excuses!

The last dance on the card: Sheriff David Clarke is not resigning.

As I stated in the last couple of blogs, many of us had been rejoicnig that Sheriff David Clarke was on his way out. Oh we were happy to think that this man, would have gone to join #45’s Cabinet for Homeland Security. But recently: Sheriff Clarke recinded his application. He didn’t take the job. What was the reason? He didnt like The Donnie? Or 45? Many are saying that outside of Wisconsin that Clarke is unfit to lead that operation in the DHS. Heck he’s unfit with his politics in Milwaukee County as SHERIFF! Richard Artison can beat Clarke in a foot race and still win. But the fact of the matter is, since now David Clarke is staying put, he will get beat by his 2018 opponent. The person I’m betting on is Earnell Lucas. Get used to say that name because I think that he’ll be the man to lead Milwaukee County Sheriff’s chair for a new clean slate. Yes we can research all we want and still think Clarke is the best for your Clarke/Republican fans. But the fact of the matter is, when he was out campaigning for the 45 Donnie who is VERY UNFIT TO BE PRESIDENT, he sold his soul. Flat out. And many of us in the Milwaukee County know it. Even you live in the outline areas in the County know it too! Yeah, your fault. I will admit that I thought that David Clarke was considered to be “Votable”, but I was wrong. Dead wrong. And he will get his day to get voted out. And you real voters whom thought that Clarke was wrong and is still wrong, 2018 better be your chance!

End of rant, and the bar is closed.


With the weekend up for the Father’s, I want to personally say Happy Father’s Day to all the Dad’s who will be recognized. Even the Grandfathers, Uncles, Cousins, and those whom are like fathers in the world. Even Godfathers.
This Father’s Day, will be a tough one for me, because my father passed on February 24th of this year, as you all know. It will be a weird one for me that he’s not here physically to celebrate another Father’s Day. This would have been for me a “40th Father’s Day” with him and a “47th” for my sister. Yes we miss him!  EVERYDAY since that day, it hasn’t been easy. Going to the entertainment area in his house where he died hasn’t been easy. And most recently, we in the family had to give up or surrender his 2007 Cadillac Escalade and that for me was real downer! Kind of sad. But that was not even sadder of losing him in February.  If you had read my “Losing Dad” blog stories, this was just opening up the book. Of course there will be more of my father’s lessons that will guide this blog as well as everyday values. If you have been riding with me through this storm and also can relate with similarity, I thank you. However, if your father is still living, and has this understanding, I must say that even though the sympathy has been plentiful, but you really haven’t experienced losing a parent. Until that moment happens to you, then maybe you can express that. Not to disrespect or front, but that is how I feel. It’s like boots. If you can’t really walk the boots that my father wore, you haven’t been there. You don’t know squat.

So with that being said, I’m dedicating this blog to the memory of my Dad. And also to the Dads whom are in heaven no longer with us. If you feel my pain, you ride with me. If you’re​ just wondering what it is, maybe this is not the story for you. 

Time to roll.

For those hating on Father’s Day, you realize they need love, right?

I see #45 already charged on being on some stupid mess. Is this the breaking point?

That shooting though in VA. Why not the coverage of the shooting more in San Francisco at all of the places: UPS?

Rep. Steve King needs to chill out and shut up. Why is he pulling the Obama card to blame?

Wonder Woman is a hit! But why all the hate of her costume not being “American enough” by Fox News?

Also: I don’t care if any of the theaters have a Women’s Only Day for Wonder Woman. So what. Let them have it. But what happens when Transformers: The Last Knight has a MEN ONLY NIGHT? Women don’t start Illing.

Is AT&T Locker really fading out so quickly?

Juneteenth is the day after Father’s Day, who is taking a day off?

Milwaukee Alderman Tim Zielenski thinks that cutting the Streetcar funding will help the salary of Milwaukee Cops and Firefighters.  Question: Does he know that THE FUNDING FOR STREETCAR IS ONLY FOR THE STREETCAR? How dumb.

I know many probably had this asking from Bill Maher’s show when Ice Cube schooled him on the N-Word. When Ice Cube said that if another race uses the word that “stabs black people in the back”, in is words per se, does that equate the pain of black folks who use the N-word to another black person whom don’t like it, feel that pain as well? (ASKING FOR A FRIEND)

I can hear this now: THERE IS NOTHING TO DO FOR THE KIDS. Well, adults what are we doing standing around and pondering? Make something!

Black people, we know that June is Black Music Month, are any of us recognizing this like Black History Month?

For the LGBT crew, you like this flag? *Source: Philly.com

Why is that when Father’s Day comes, and you’re in Church, why is the congregation is less packed than Mother’s Day?

June 10th just passed: You realized that there was a Children’s Day right?

MPS: you realize that you will have a short summer vacay right?

Milwaukee, you know that Summerfest is coming up with that 50 year lineup?

With all the news of Russia floating, did they or not tapped into our Election stuff?

Will the Milwaukee Public Schools alumni have a another Alumni Summit?

For those that hate the females on the hill, do you hear what Sen. Kamala Harris is saying? Don’t get interrupted, Kamala!

Is Steve Harvey really getting low in his comments of brown water?

When the Summer comes…..oh what’s up with June 21st?

So far, Wisco has 2 candidates to possibly run for Governor. Can any of them be strong that can take down Scott Walker?

The recent shooting at Milwaukee’s Lakefront is not surprising. But why did the 19 year driver now dead DID NOT stop previously?  I’ll talk about this later.

Class of 2017! Congrats. Now what’s​ next?

Speaking of the shootings: we already had June 2nd of the National Gun Violence Awareness Day to recognize the concerns of Gun Violence. Why haven’t many didn’t listen to the consciousness of this matter? Ask those whom lost family members or friends to guns. It’s really the accountability.

Ok, so body shaming is a thing. Actually it’s been a thing. Remember when back in school when folks ribbed on someone who had a big butt, braces, big nose or any other body parts? We’ve been body shaming since forever. Y’all can stop now.

Will Sheriff David Clarke EVER take his resignation as Sheriff now?

Of all people: Senator John McCain, says that America had better leadership under Obama. WOW! Why didn’t he say this when Obama was in office?

And now, I have to switch the gears for the Father’s here:

Attention Single Mother Ladies, when your man is like a father to your kids, yes he’s not your baby daddy. But do you think that the way he’s treating your kids with respect, is kind of like well, like a father?

Ladies DO NOT GET AN ATTITUDE ON FATHER’S DAY! DON’T YOU DARE DO IT! It’s not your day. You can support it, do you agree?

Again, when Father’s Day comes up in church, why is the congregation is less packed than Mother’s Day?

Look, when I’m in the stores, why that other folks assume that I’m a father? NO I AM NOT!

How many Churches will have Men’s Day on Father’s Day?

For those of us Single men whom are NOT fathers, and don’t have no kids and not being pressured being fathers, what is the haps from the women who don’t seem to understand that? And that goes for Men with kids and married.

Does being a Godfather count as well being a Father?

Does being a Community Father or Male Guardian count being a Father?

Does adopting kids count being a Father?

Chris Rock once said that “your uncles prepare you for life”. Agree?

For those whom never had a chance to celebrate a Father’s Day with your Father, do you go to your uncles or male cousins for advice, as in Male-Side Advice?

Why do those who have Fathers alive telling those that lost fathers recently or long ago that ” My father is living and I understand what you’re going through.” Um….no you don’t. When will those stop saying that? We get the sympathy, but you don’t understand the pain.

Why do those who are your relatives have to say I’m sorry about your dad? My dad was a relative! WAKE UP!

And the last question: Well, I’m not to mention that. Simply I’m just going to leave like this. Those of us whom have lost our Dads. Even years ago, or just recently are still feeling the sting of losing the men we call Daddy, Dad, Pops, The Old Man, etc. It hurts. It’s weird and surreal and also crazy that they are not here! It’s not a reality show that it will come on and it’s all an act. Our fathers whom we lost are not coming back. What remains of them: is the lessons that they left behind. No matter how big, small, large, tiny, easy, or hard. They left marks, summaries, teachings, unfinished business, and many other aspects that we continue to learn from and pass along to the next generation. If we whom had fathers and I think it’s emotional for us, I have several questions to ask:

Did we learned something when Dad was here?

What did we learn?

How will we apply it to our daily lives?

And what will we leave behind with those lessons?

What happens afterwards, do we continue with the missions or restart our own stuff?

DO WE EVEN CARE?!!!!

So yes, to the fallen fathers, and even to my own Father that I’m named after: We wish them our love, our hearts, and our sincere, SINCERE gratitude for the lessons that gave us believe in us, empower us and continue the goals always. We say to the heavens to them: HAPPY FATHER’S DAY. We the survivors of the fallen fathers whom are not here resting in the graves, crypts, and Urns will NEVER EVER FORGET! Their spirits will inspire and soar always in us to be more empowered than ever before.

 

 

 

 

 

 


FontCandy (22).png

 

I know that the DNC and the RNC had their Conventions, but guess what: It’s time to talk about what’s up in Milwaukee: In relation to the first MPS Alumni Summit.

Coming off the heels of the first All-Alumni Reunion, the summit was gathered at Bradley Tech High School on July 22nd, and yes: IDEAS were flowed about how can we the MPS Alumni can combine our forces to be one voice and one experience to give our ears, our EXPERIENCED ALUMNI EARS to give out to the current district of our schools. I know I’m a Marshall guy. But others were King, Hamiltion, Tech, Vincent, Lincoln High School, South Division, West Division (or Milwaukee High School for the Arts), and many others all under the MPS Alumni Umbrella.

This Summit was all about our Alumni Associations. Our Alumni Groups. Us being combined with many talents, ideas, truthful comments, and a host of collaborative ideas to remain ACTIVELY INVOLVED! – You will see this again towards the end.

When we gathered at Bradley Tech’s Entrance way, we were greeted by members of the Milwaukee Public Schools. They directed us to check in which we were given packets with information about volunteering, upcoming events, an overview how the 2015-16 provided the successes of the academic performances, an overview of Universal Drivers Education, a program that was missing from MPS for a while, is now making a comeback into the high schools. Plus an overview of what Milwaukee Public Schools is doing now to improve the outcomes of students: from White House Turnaround Arts, Community Schools, Partnership Schools, Trauma Sensitive Schools, College and Readiness, and M3 – Collaborating with MPS, Milwaukee Area Technical College and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.

However: that was just the first wave of info. We were later divided into groups and were in discussing about the experiences of our Alma Maters. We talked about various experiences of Alumni Associations being an influence and a liaison. We also talked about why those in the Alumni don’t always contribute or gain interests in joining the Alumni Associations. From the lack of interest, to not revealing so much about the past. Even breaking the ice of the saying “Alumni Associations are for old people” commentary. REALLY?! One of the directors, of the committee is a 1997 HS Graduate of the Milwaukee Public Schools and currently active with Milwaukee Public Schools’ Central Services areas. Plus also many might realize that Alumni Groups are in need of the young folks. Those whom are late 80’s – 00’s that are alive and active. We also learned that there were commentary about not enough knowledge about Alumni Associations in terms of not hearing of one, not being knowledgeable about their purpose. Some of us commented about haven’t got started on joining Alumni Associations due to job starts or raising families. Many of us joined Alumni Associations well after 15 -20 years after graduating from High School. Me for example, I joined the John Marshall High School Alumni Association as a board member in 2011 which was about 16 years after my 1995 graduation. We also talked about collaborating with other high schools in the district. As many know here in Milwaukee, Rufus King and Riverside for example have Alumni Competitions in Flag Football, and year after they compete in raising scholarships and charitable causes. With other schools, Bradley Tech has the Turkey Bowl Alumni Classic on Thanksgiving Weekend and usually other schools of Bay View, King, Hamilton, and Riverside all compete under sportsmanship. Plus also, besides the trophy, it’s also about the value of education to the current students, with scholarships and career opportunities.

Also in the first part, we talked about that ALL Schools should have an All-Alumni Reunions every year. This needs to happen. For example: Rufus King has their annual Alumfest on the school grounds each year during late July. Bradley Tech has an All School Cookout and they have been doing it since early 80’s. There was two points that Marshall had an All-Alumni event in which the school celebrated 50 years in 2011. Plus along with the Soccer Game which was organized by a former Marshall High School Coach, the school also had a mini open house in which brought back some Eagles Alumni to view the merchandise and the soccer game as well. Even though there were some of the interests that was successful, but many should have came out or donated to the school for fundraisers. We also talked about the naming of the schools. In keeping the names of the schools to have that connection on the Alumni level. For example: this portrays about in one school in particular, my Alma Mater, John Marshall High School. Just recently the school got it’s original name back.

But what took to long get it going again?

Back around 2011 as most know, I blogged about the name of Samuel Morse*John Marshall School for the Gifted and Talented. Why was it again? Two things – Low Enrollment and also MPS was viewing the Gifted and Talented Program on the Middle School level in which everyone know that Morse was known for, but there was not one on the High School Level. Henceforth, that’s how Morse was fed into Marshall based on the Gifted and Talented program. And the school was going back to it’s 6-12 Grade roots. Just as a reminder who don’t know, Marshall started out as a 6-12 grade school, or a Middle and High School that was established in 1961. Furthermore, according to the history, the thought of Marshall being a Middle School/High School goes back to 1929, when then MPS Superindent Harold S. Vincent was in charge of the school district. Yes, the same Harold S. Vincent that has a school in his honor of Vincent High School here in Milwaukee. The school was placed on a land once owned by the Archdioces of Milwaukee at the time in which it was vacant space. There was no Dominos, no Citgo, no Wendy’s, not even a Mautz Paint Store that was placed. The School itself was state of the art, and once had over 3,000 students enrolled. Even some of the students had to go to the 65th Street School (now the Milwaukee Envriomental Sciences Academy) just across Capitol Drive.

Marshall has gone through it’s naming transformation over the course of the 55 years. It started out with “John Marshall Junior-Senior High School”.  Then around in the early 1980’s, it became “John Marshall Senior High School”. Around the Mid 80’s to the late 90’s, it was “John Marshall High School”. For the early 2000’s, the name and the school was split in three sections with W.E.B. Dubois High School, The Milwaukee Academy of Aviation and Technology or MAAT. Which the building was named “John Marshall Campus”. Thank former MPS Superintendent William Anderkopolus, a Marshall Grad for that. And most recently between 2010 and 2016, “Samuel Morse*John Marshall School for the Gifted and Talented”. Yes, John Marshall has been on the building for 55 years. The Gifted and Talented thing with Morse really had worked. The enrollment was building, the academic of Project Lead the Way, STEM, and many others really clicked. It was budding.

A point for the Alumni was asked in a sense from the staff, regarding the Alumni Association. I remember one of the former board members getting word in a question that asked “The Alumni Association: All they do is come to graduations thanking the graduates, with speeches and having their pictures on the wall. What have the done for us?!”

Ooooh! We were called out.

The Alumni Association had been called out and woken up by the then Morse*Marshall staff. They wanted to see us. They wanted to talk to us. They called us out. For the record, we visited their open houses, their Homecoming Games, Basketball Games, Marched on parade, visited their art galleries, musicals, and partake in their concerts of Winter and Spring. Even represented at their Graduation Ceremonies. So yes, we were “called out” and responded. And supported the students of their gifts and talents. Around last summer, there a flyer going around in regarding the “Morse” side of “Morse*Marshall”.  Early on,  I was approached by a former Parent Coordinator that MPS might pull the Morse Students out of Marshall sometime in the 2015-16 School Semester. I asked is the school going back to the 9th – 12th Grade, and the answer was yes. Later on in the year, the notice was approached to the Alumni Association in regarding a public meeting at the old Burroughs Middle School. Some representatives from MPS showed up at the meeting and talked about the pros and cons of Morse. There was some positive pointers, but the negative pointers of the stats and data was a concern. A concern that had to be examined based on academics and overall performance. One of the parents in the Public Meeting that her children wanted the “Middle School Experience”, in which she wanted a stand alone Middle School. Just 6th – 8th Grade. The data and notes of the meeting were later passed on to the district board for review. Last October, MPS reviewed the notes of the meeting, and it was approved that the district will move the Middle School of Morse out of Marshall to the Burroughs Middle School Building in the 2016-17 year, while Marshall will grow as once again as a 9th – 12th Grade High School. My Alma Mater will also reopen some classrooms and get new textbooks just to name a few upgrades. Later on, the school got another visit from MPS, this time from the Alumni Student Engagement area. Plus this was with the Alumni Association. One of the highlighted reasons I got from meeting was a new way to help strengthen the Alumni through their schools. And the featured part of the meeting what I got out of was the name of “Morse*Marshall”. Personally there was a disconnect between the name of Morse and Marshall. And partially it was due to the identity of the school. Many of feedback, partially from the Alumni wanted the school’s name to return to John Marshall to have that connection not only of the school’s history, but also with connection with the Alumni. When the school name of “Morse*Marshall” came out, not many in the Alumni was not too pleased with it. NOT MANY!  Majority wanted the old name back to reconnect as in once again a sense of identity that many know.

Furthermore, as of now, a new school year is coming, and the name of “John Marshall High School For the Gifted and Talented” is coming to open another chapter in the school’s history. I shared this link on Facebook on my private page, and later on two Milwaukee Marshall Alumni related group pages, and the results HAVE EXPLODED! And currently the word is spreading. So for you Marshall Alumni that wanted the name back, you got it! But I asked this question: Should we back this up? And make it stick? This portion of the news just came in time before the MPS Alumni Summit.

Other parts from the first meeting came about with some ideas to flow to all MPS Alumni:

  • Discussions about Go Fund Me, a page that could use in assisting in fundraising, etc.
  • Questions that might arise of “How can I help” Mixed also with being proactive.

Highlights of three versions of Small groups – These are the small groups that are very common as we know:

  1. Gung Ho – Those whom are always doing the work. Mostly the grunts.
  2. Actively involved or still involved
  3. Waiting List – those who waiting to assist or work with Alumni Associations.

Suggestive Ideas. And all should know:

Again: Have All School reunions every year. Host them during a week or month. Mostly during the summer months as an example.  (King Alumfest, Tech Annual Cookout every summer)

Help marketing to gain interests.

Have highly motivated people.

Help the system/help the school.

Use parent engagement.

Have 2 schools to collaborate: (i.e. – Marshall/Washington)An example raised about the Alumni Games of King and Riverside.

MPS Mentoring Program – Mentoring students while in school. Keep track on their progress, goals, objectives, etc.

Have businesses/trade colleges fairs and career fairs in the schools. This would be excellent for the Alumni to collaborate.

 

The second part of the meeting was more of what could be about our ideas to reach out as a MPS Alumni Member. One the things I said in the part of the meeting was these two words: “Actively Involved.” That is what EVERY MPS ALUMNI Member must do to be paying attention of what’s going on in our Alma Maters. Mainly some just come for party and glory which is fine, but many of us want to work! That should send signals to those that we want this to happen.

Reach out to businesses – mainly around the schools. Many of the businesses that the schools know, should support. For example, if a small business or well know business knows Marshall High School or Washington High School very well, that business needs to be reached out. This is where sponsors and support needs to happen! The same for those whom are well known Alums that work for a business that the schools really need to reach out.

Adopt a school. Some alumni can get together and form a group to adopt a school in the district. It could be a Elementary, Middle, or High School.

Identify the products of MPS: Add High School and year on business cards. (As in with Colleges and Universities) EVERY ALUMNI NEEDS TO DO THIS! Even though its not wanted, but still everyone in the MPS ALUMNI needs to add the their MPS ALUMNI to help connect and advertise. As an example: Milwaukee Public Schools Alumni: 1995; Milwaukee Area Technical College Alumni: 2000; University of Wisconsin-Stout Alumni: 2006. And matter of fact, that needs to be added on LinkedIn. Just saying.

Put a “good news” newsletter for the MPS Alumni Hub. Over the course of the year, we hear about all the scandals of Milwaukee Public Schools. Fights, suspensions, bringing a gun, racism etc. No matter the scandal, it seems to say “NO MPS FOR MY CHILD!” Or “Oh, it’s a fight at Marshall with all the gangs, or Bradley Tech got some word of N*GGER on the front of a locker”. “Or Riverside High School had some crazy fights on Facebook Live or Periscope. And Vincent joined in with King.”

Stop me if you heard this before. Why is it that when stuff like this happens it’s bad for the district and everyone goes hysterical about one MPS Fight strikes everyone to fear?! We ALUMNI need to talk about the good side of MPS, and what we the ALUMNI need to talk about that is positive, uplifting, inspiring, and a good opening reach to get us going for our kids that are currently in MPS and doing great things.

Speaking of that, I kept scratching my head on this, and it’s for us music folks. I know that MPS has an Alumni Choir, is there space for making an MPS Alumni Band? Think about it, MPS! An Alumni Band with horns, keyboards, drummers, guitar players, a DJ if you mind that can play instrumental music. And the idea can be formed with those who want to play for concerts with the Alumni Choir, have you Alma Mater Colors in full force, and even play at the MPS Music Festival. Or Summerfest. THINK ABOUT IT! Even an MPS Alumni Orchestra needs to be formed. I’m just saying. Who’s in?

And the last point: Strengthen all of our schools. All of our neighborhood, charter, special, and many other schools in Milwaukee Public Schools need to have strength to carry on. Never forget, we have to do this for the kids. We Alums had our day way back when, and yet we need to have that power to support. For many years, it was the parents, tax payers, staff, and neighborhoods that stood up. Now adding the Alumni to the mix is really going to generate new ideas to thrive. Think about this: many tax payers, educators, business owner, worker, parent, veteran, ambassador, or other title might have gone on to better things, but MANY started at Milwaukee Public Schools, and this would be a great time to support this new energy!

The last part of the Summit was more like a summary. In which what was discussed and what was learned. I think part of my summary was described above when I said the words “ACTIVELY INVOLVED”. That is what we need to do as MPS ALUMNI the most. I mean already we got the tools and talents. We need to put them to work.

Also, for anyone is a MPS Alumni Member, a website on the website has been created for us who want to be further engaged. The Milwaukee Public Schools has created the MPS Alumni Hub  for us Alums who want to know about any upcoming events, news, reunions, activities and many other we can keep track. There is a sign up sheet online in which you can register and the info will be delivered to your inbox. And for the record, this new areas of Alumni and Student Engagement been active since last September. And it took off since.

Overall, I’ve gained some insight about this. And I’m glad that I got the chance to get this info. What I have learned that we Alums can be valuable in the district based on what we do. I think also the idea of creating an Alumni Hub or an Alumni Area per se, is not to forget about us. But also realize that there is more we can gain. Of course we got our schools to upkeep, but combined with our stenghts and ideas, we can say that we are so MPS PROUD!

So MPS Alumni, its time to be real, be legit, and be giving. Our ideas must work to gain new ideas and to continue to spread “NEW ENERGY!” in the district that many of us grew out.

Oh, ask the MPS Alumni Office for a MPS Alumni pin to add to your collection!

 


Ok, Milwaukeeans: This is a test. If you went to an MPS School or Schools, yes you have graduated. You probably got an invite or visit from MPS to your old High School and possibly an invite or info about a potential First MPS All Alumni Event scheduled for February 2016. You probably got it via email, Facebook, the MPS Alumni Hub online, or possibly word of mouth through your community announcements and/or Radio. No matter what or where you got the info, it spreaded out. Now you probably went to other “all alumni” high school reunions in all, but none of them were under MPS. Until now. This event was indeed 170 years in the making.

Here’s the thing, last month, the City of Milwaukee celebrated 170 years. This MPS District or Organization, is now 170 years young.

I went to the All-Alumni reunion Tuesday night, the day after the Milwaukee Bucks beat the LA Lakers with Kobe Bryant’s last game in the city. And almost hundreds of folks had gone in with the old school High School Colors of North Division, South Division, Pulaski, Marshall (my alma mater), Washington and others. The largest and most obvious to show up: Tech. The oldest alum had shown up from 1938, with a 1949 grad whom is ready for it’s 67th Anniversary of the 1949 Reunion for North Division. The generations collided with new friends, old friends, connections, and most of all: getting us Alumni connected to rekindle our old schools with new energy.

In the middle of the program, MPS Superintendent, Darienne Driver, Alumni Coordinator T.R. Williams, and even Mayor Tom Barrett all acknowledged us MPS Alums for coming out, and also to continue to do the thing we do most: Give back to our old schools! Plus also in the program, there was a acknowledgement of Sweaters and Jackets. Now for you younger bloggers, our elders in High Schools used to wear sweaters that have their names on them, plus chevrons, years, pictures and also medals. Now as we know, it’s mostly Jackets. And my customized (and I mean customized) Band Letterman Jacket from Marshall was noted as a contender! Yep, I showed out with it! And yes bloggers, I have a Band Letterman Jacket that I wore in my student years at Marshall. It’s a Customized Jacket that looks like a Varsity Jacket, but on the front, it had the “John Marshall Band” lettering with the medals and pins that I wore in school. Also it had my name with the Band patch underneath. And on the back, it had the “Milw.Marshall Eagles” patch along the back. Plus on the sides, I had two chevrons and a long waited 95 that I wanted so bad to customize. All were in the school’s colors of Columbia Blue and Scarlet. So yes, it’s been acknowledged. And long ago, it was a mixed bag, but I repped the school with that mixed bag!

And the event concluded with some of us doing some dancing, and showing out infront of the news cameras!

Plus I ran into my classmates and connections that I know on a MPS level. Even former Administrators or aides whom are current principals. And family members, community, and former church members all connected with the Milwaukee Public Schools. From the 1940’s to the 2010’s.

Overall, this first event of an All-Alumni Reunion was SO SPOT ON! I know many have individual reunions or small reunions, but this All-Alumni Reunion was so needed to have a new diverse spark. With all the stuff that happens in the city from Carjackings, Unemployment, Racism, Killings in all, yes America: Milwaukee can have one night of joy without anyone getting killed or going home in a casket after a carjacking. Do you hear me?!

Most folks would probably denounce this event, but like many times you need to step out and try. This was the first, the VERY FIRST Alumni Reunion for us MPS Alumni folks. And hopefully, this should continue. So as an MPS Alum, from 38th Street School, Jackie Robinson Middle School and John Marshall High School it’s a pleasure to come out and party!

Even as an introverted black guy.

I am #MPSProud, lifetime member of the #MPSForeverFamily, and #MPSAlumni!

Side note: the event has additional pictures via the Milwaukee Public Schools website and Facebook.

 

 

 


Two things to comment: Hurricane Katrina and Homicides. Listen up.

First thing to come to mind: Hurricane Katrina. We all know what happened with the city of New Orleans exactly 10 years ago this week. Many of us were watching to see, how can a city like New Orleans be flooded like that. We were still at war with Iraq, Bush was still in Office, and I was still in college working on my Bachelor’s Degree. Plus the up and coming Kanye West did the most well known commentary that mostly had gone viral: “George Bush doesn’t care about black people.”  And seeing many going to the Superdome to voice their concerns and troubles about the disaster. So yes, we remember it all. Most of us remember the levees being broke. And many still probably blame the government for not keeping up the maintentance, nor the outlook, nor the well being of the levees operated under the guidance of the Corps of Engineers!

Yes, New Orleans has been in this struggle for the last decade. And the last time I was in New Orleans, was in 2001. Way before Katrina hit, and way before the deaths of Aaliyah, and the terrorists attacks on 9/11. My first impression of New Orleans was good. Lively as it is with music everywhere. And even Harrah’s Casino near the hotel. And even hearing a Church sermon on Digging Ditches on a Sunday Morning. No question, being in New Orleans was a good time. Even going by the Superdome where the Packers won Superbowl 31.

I want to say to the residents, and some of my kin folk down in New Orleans that, you have not been forgotten about. We all know what happen, and even the inner struggle of the Black Residents that go through the pain every day that doesn’t get all the coverage like many others in the country! Stay lively, Crescent City! And still, in the words of one of your native folks, “the struggle continues!”

Speaking of that: 103 Homicides in Milwaukee. A second take that I’m going to comment!

103 Homicides in Milwaukee.

Brew City, I don’t know what is up with this. Oh yes I do. The problems lie is with us. Us everyday citizens. Why the HECK we are allowing this to happen? That is unacceptable! 103 homicides. Last time there was this many homicides was in the mid 90’s. Actually, the year 1990 comes to mind. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, I did a research of the homicides of Milwaukee, and it was high. In Milwaukee County alone, the victims total number was reached to 155 according to the report’s Trends. The Percentage of the Homicides was reached to 70%. Again this is just the trends in general in 1990! The majority of the victims were indeed black, and the offenders of those who were victimized were also black as well which increased to 60% towards the end of the year of 1990.

Now you are probably thinking, dang was Milwaukee really like this?!

So when I did the research of the dilemmas that the city faced 25 years ago, to me it resonated of what is happening right now currently. Even with the ideas of creating new jobs or getting new jobs HERE, there will be some young fool here in the city that will try to stir up trouble. All you punk bullies in Milwaukee, and weak gang members, this is what your life is headed if you don’t change NOW! And those of you it’s OK to hit a woman, or to break a man after that man has done so much work, you will so find out that being on a report like this is no joke! Even trying to get a freaking job!!!!! But to matter of subject of homicides, that is major!

So how do we resolve this? Ok course the lawmakers will be accountable. They will.

Of course there needs to be more usefulness of After-School programs in the School Semester. We know.

Community Centers will be on deck everyday. And yes, even the Church. Now many of you are going to calling the church folks sheeples and charlatans, and then say it’s all about the money! Let me ask these questions: what are the nightspots doing to help curb the problems in the city? What are the DJ’s doing besides spinning songs for throwback nights and for that special Rapper coming to the city? (not all but some) What are the local stores that many of YOU go to everyday or month to spend that hard earned money on the new IPhone, or IPad, new Air Jordans, that throwback jersey, smartphone, or just to get that widescreen TV to watch your football games on during the season? HELLO! what those spots doing? Are they sheeples and charlatans too?! And about the cash flow?

HELLO! Let’s be real!

Don’t assume it’s all on the Communiity Centers and Churches. And some schools. And even Funeral Homes.

Some might say, “aww man dude really?! You’ve been in the clubs and the churches! Why are you judging?” I’m not judging, this is called condemning! And plus, I’m proving a point that many don’t realize. Folks need to wake up!

Everyone of us in Milwaukee, needs to be on deck. Hell, I don’t care if you don’t have a job. Or a Master’s degree, or a up and coming minister, or like to go on Periscope to get your hair done for your girls. We need to be on deck when it comes to the act of homicides or neighborhood watch everytime! PERIOD!

I remember this back in John Marshall High School’s band class: “Results Matter. Excuses do not.”

Ponder this, everyone.

Oh, by the way: Milwaukee Public Schools is going to start.


It’s been awhile since the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel had anything fun and nostalgic since the Green Sheet left us in 1994. Yes, I’ll admit, I was a fanatic of the Journal’s Green Journal of fun things of puzzles and horoscopes. But on Memorial Day when many of us were paying respects to those who have lost their lives in battle for the country, an old school favorite of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel had returned. No it wasn’t the ghost of Solomon Juneau from the old Milwaukee Sentinel! It was a sheet. A Green Sheet.

For those who don’t know the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel’s Green Sheet started in 1927 by the editor of the time Larry Lawrence. He started to edit the section from it’s (according to the Article) scandal-seeking ways to the then, and “family friendly fare.” In which you read about the horoscopes, the Dear Abby Advice Columns, and many many others. It was a nostalgic feel of those things that you see every week Monday through Saturday. However, as I indicated, the Journal discontinued the Green Sheet back in 1994, and at that time, I was still in my third year in High School. Years went by of course and many others who were long time fans of the paper wanted it back so badly. Well that wish, and those proposals were on the table and it’s complete. For the first time in 21 years, the JS brought back the old Green Sheet Classic with new twists for this era of blogs, smart-phones, websites, social media, and the era First black President. (Yeah I said it!) Expect the Green Sheet to feature alot of Throwback Thursdays. ALOT of them! 

Many of us in Milwaukee who are between the Baby-Boomers and Generation X/Y we remember the Green Sheet Biblically! Many of you probably got that on your Facebook Time pages of Alumni, Classics or many others that you want to informed about the classic resurrecting. But for me, as a member of Generation X, this picture below is so linked to me. Very much linked!

Courtesy of the Milwaukee Journal. 1993.

Source: Courtesy of the Milwaukee Journal’s The Green Sheet. 1993. 

This picture was taken back by the then Milwaukee Journal in 1993 when I was still a student at John Marshall High School. We were practicing for a halftime show appearance (on our part) with the Special Education Students. The event that was held in the month of October was for the Very Special Arts. This halftime show was for the special ed students that had the opportunity to perform the show along with other bands, and especially: The UW-Band. And yes, I had the chance to shake the hand of UW-Band director Mike Leckrone (who is still the director to this day). Anyway, being able to perform in Madison with my old high school, and the special eds, and the UW-Band was really something. And it just hit me, that game with the Badgers was against Michigan in 1993 (which the Badgers won), and it also had the infamous “Camp Randall Crush”, in which many of the fans tried to get onto the field to celebrate the Badgers victory, and so many of the students got hurt. Lucky for us, we left way before that happened!

So that was a real throwback that will never be forgotten! But other than that, we had a good time just being at the game, and help perform with the Special Education Students, whom also like me are now Marshall grads. And I’m glad even 21 years later, the John Marshall High School Band was featured in one of best sections the Milwaukee Journal had was with the Green Sheet. Not the obits!

So for all you now MPS students and teachers that are doing well thus far, don’t be surprised that this could happen to be published. Even if it’s now the revamped version of the Green Sheet!

To see the Green Sheet via the Internet: Click here – http://www.jsonline.com/greensheet/


For the third weekend in September, the City of Milwaukee has played host in the past for a couple of years in an event called Doors Open Milwaukee. Now, check this. This is the event where many Milwaukeeans go behind the scenes at Milwaukee’s well known buildings, arenas, structures and most of all, landmarks that we drive, play, work, and also socialize each day. No question, this was an open house in a unique type of way to have the city to “open up” and discover the side of Milwaukee that should be explored.

This year, it was my first opportunity to explore. In the past, I’ve read about it, seen the pictures and heard the stories. But now, I get my chance to explore, and re-explore 3 different sites that I highlighted.

The first was the Sherman Park Senior Living Center. For those that forgotten, this in the past was Peckham Middle School, and later on it was my former Middle School of Jackie Robinson. For the record, I was a student at Jackie Robinson back in the late 80’s and early 90’s. And graduated back in 1991. And plus I used to called it the “Lion’s Den” due to the fact that Robinson’s mascot was the Lions. And the colors were Blue and Yellow, and the school used to have different “families” according to each homeroom and floor. For you old Robinson Lions out there: FAMILY 3!!!!!!

The school turned structure was completely different than my days at Robinson. But the corridors I used to walk through remained the same. The areas where I toured was full of short apartments for seniors. Nothing but washers/dryers, combined bedrooms, living spaces, fitness rooms and a media center that used to be one of the boiler rooms. There were also items encased in glass ranged from office signs, a huge bill board of the area when the school was built, projectors, a big artwork of Barack Obama, an office for Gorman Construction, pictures from events via the archives, and other useful artwork. The Library where I used to have my books on, is still intact, but it was converted to a short lounge. The Auditorium in the facility was the still the same when I left in 1991, but aged overtime. The former cafeteria is now a hallway that houses more visual memorabilia of the school plus an elevator. Back in my day, there was no elevator! And the Gym where I had my recess stuff, it now houses salons, and barber shops for the residents. Talk about total change! And I also heard that most of the senior residents that live in the new area, used to be students at Robinson/Peckham during it’s hey day.

The second site of my first time visitation: The U.S. Bank Building. Now I’m assuming that everyone knows about this structure. It was built back in the 1970’s and had gone through name changes of First Wisconsin, Firstar, and now, U.S. Bank. And still remains the tallest building in the city and state. Still, the iconic building continues to attract both locally and nationally. For this occasion, the one true thing about this area: is the observation deck. For many years, the deck was closed off to the public due to business, but during this event, it gives an open view for the city residnets to see all of Milwaukee from the four areas: The Lake Shore, The South, The Downtown area, and the North Side. I was in amazement and blessed (yes BLESSED) to get my photograph skills on to take pictures and have them on storage. This was, to me one of my must do lists that I had to do while staying and living in the Milwaukee Area. And of course it was long line to wait, and going up an freight elevator up 41 flights. And just for those who want to know and should know, the U.S Bank Center does not have a 13th floor! Just to be clear!

Finally, after church, I visited a church. One of the oldest United Methodist Churches in the city, Summerfield was my final stop of my first time of doing the Doors Open Milwaukee. The church itself still has it’s old school surroundings dating back to the 1900’s. But also the church goes back to the late 1890’s during it’s founding. During my visit, the best view was the sanctuary that had the old structures, and it had some new digs. The windows are a classic that fit the mold of the structure, and overview. Plus with me being part of the UMC, I had to drop by and show them some love and support. But mostly, we networked as United Methodists!

Overall, I have enjoyed the overall structure and behind the scenes looks of this event. And mostly it’s just the new beginning for at least “something to do” in a city that leans identity. But it’s the Brew City and even in an event like this, makes you realize that there is more than meets the eye of exploration.


I’ve heard this before. School is not for everyone. Or school is not cool.

No matter how you say it, it’s almost it’s the same sentence in which the educational portion of things gets all negative and not having the postitiveness of all things being well structured.

Now a 15-16 year kid is now becoming a story about school; brainwashing young folks, and also telling them to drop out. I am talking about Will Smith’s youngest son, Jaden. We’ve all seen what he said right?

Straight from his Twitter messages, he writes:

People Use To Ask Me What Do You Wanna Be When You Get Older And I Would Say What A Stupid Question The Real Question Is What Am I Right Now

All The Rules In This World Were Made By Someone No Smarter Than You. So Make Your Own.

School Is The Tool To Brainwash The Youth.

Education Is Rebellion.

If Newborn Babies Could Speak They Would Be The Most Intelligent Beings On Planet Earth.

If Everybody In The World Dropped Out Of School We Would Have A Much More Intelligent Society.

Everybody Get Off Your Phones And Go Do What You Actually Wanna Do

Really, young Jaden?

Obviously, this is nothing new. I’ve heard various versions of this before about school doesn’t teach or show. I get it. But why would Will and Jada’s baby boy would encourage his fans, or those who follow him want to drop out? That to me sends a red flag in sense of bad boundaries. What do I mean by that is yes, you can do what you feel when you are  older in all, BUT STILL: Education is a must. Obviously, Jaden is getting the wrong message in which many have been saying in the past. We can talk about the Mark Zuckerbergs, the Bill Gates, and even the Scott Walkers who don’t all have a College Degree. That’s a different story. However for a 16 year old who doesn’t know much, like I said, that has sending mixed signals of discontent for those who want to be EDUCATED, SUCCESSFUL and many others. Without having this notion of being brainwashed.

He says “School is the tool to brainwash the youth”. Which schools is he talking about? Public, Charter, Private, Home school, what?!! Let me tell you about my Public Education experience. During my days of a Milwaukee Public Schools student, yes I had to go to the classes, and get the courses necessary to make it out. I remember going though the Algebras, Geometrys, Band, History, Art, GYM (in which most should be doing in schools now), Reading, Math, and many other things that got my 12+ years in school out. Yes, I will admit, it wasn’t simple. But at least I’m building up on my learning continuously on my job, community work and many others that got me to the dance. Now I come from a family of educators. Have they brainwashed me? HELL NO!!!!! I got my Education not only in the classroom, but outside of the classroom. And I’m still getting that.  Recently on WNOV, (still I listen to The Forum), it was reported that the United States is behind in math and science. Which we all know. And as far as the jobs, with all due respect for those outside of America coming in to get trained up, WHY aren’t many of us (really with the Black Folks)  stepping up with STEM jobs and many others that require objective skills to adapt in this competitive world? I don’t care what the competition is. But it is competition. Where’s Jaden Smith’s commentary on that? I know. He’s 16. And he has this potential to think all we wants, like most teens do. But likewise, reality will come out to haunt him. I hate to say it. He’s an upcoming actor in the Smith family in all. But he has to get his boundaries straight in regarding education. And to those who follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google Plus hangouts or whatever: I have a message for you. Yes, we can be successful all we want. I mean it’s a requirement since day one. And no doubt we want to showcase our talents, and gifts to make due for our progress and cause. But I have got to say this: you still have to be educated promptly to extend your learning, and your objectives.

  • You aren’t going to be successful by sitting on your butt and watching the parade go by.
  • You aren’t going to be successful by sitting on your butt, and complaining that your school or college ain’t doing nothing.
  • You aren’t going to be successful by sitting on your butt, and seeing the famous folks getting all the fame and glory, and the average uneducated Joe is still complaing that he or she not in the game!
  • You aren’t going to be successful by watching a tweet about telling folks to dropout (yeah I’m going there) and quitting school to be a good person in life.

Will Smith back in his Fresh Prince days used to say “Stay in school. It’s your best move!” It was real talk.

Can Jaden sample that for the greater good?


First: take a look at this pic.

This was just coming in this week. After many years of speculation, complaints, ideas, blocking and concerns, the Bronzeville District in Milwaukee, where mostly of the history of the area of African-American connections, would finally get a Community Center landed in the Black Community. Also there is another angle in which a private school wants bids on the building of the school of St. Marcus. Already, the Milwaukee Public Schools has been scanning and making decisions based on some of the buildings that have been vacant for the past several years.  This week on WNOV, and in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel,  it was reported that this matter of the building received a 8-0 vote, and several other alderman were on board in reflecting the unanimous vote. Plus also, even a private donor has put up 2 Million Dollars of the individual’s money (ALL 2 Million of it) to contribute to the building of the Community Center. This is a breakthrough news mostly because it’s been a talk about over 5 and a half years for a Community Center to be developed in the BLACK community!

Of course also, there was competition coming from St. Marcus in which they wanted the building to be converted to a private school for their 900 students in the same area. The bad news for them: they lost the votes, and were late to the decision making. According to MPS, they wanted the building to be a community center and that should be that. Period!

With all due respect to St. Marcus, there is another building they could use to expand, and it’s right next to the Black Holocaust Museum. The old Garfield Elementary School. Or the former Lee Elementary School which is not far from Malcolm X Academy Building. And speaking of the Black Holocaust Museum, word on the wires and on black talk radio, that might be on it’s way back being open again! The museum that the late James Cameron founded on his experiences of racism and discrimination, might be reborn. Currently it’s available in a virtual sense online, but for this, is another attempt of a revived breakthrough.

If it all goes well, this could be another main source for blacks to go in terms of health, voting, driver’s license renewal, jobs, workshops, business, the arts and others to gain more of not only the Bronzeville Community, and the Black Community.  This has been a long time coming. And it should have came sooner than later. The reason why I say this, as I was listening to WNOV this morning and about the 110th Anniversary of Harley-Davidson. Previously I said in the blogs that the African-American Community ALMOST was not included in the festivities. Not being pictured on the cover or added to the programs. And yes, with the suggestion of Annette Polly Williams in making flyers, so the black businesses could be added to the stops or hangouts for the guest Harley riders. Or should I say, the black bikers. If there were a Community Center that were up in the Bronzeville District, that would get more attraction in my view. Especially for those in the Bronzeville District. Oh, it would have been WAY BETTER than having Dollar Tree in the area. I’ll bet that the visiting Harley Riders, probably visited other community centers in the Milwaukee Area, such as the Serb Hall, Irish, Italian, Hispanic, LGBT, Polish and others, but what about the black community? For those bikers who don’t know, or those who are just curious, you might have seen all of Milwaukee, BUT this area! So in the next five years, I predict that the Milwaukee Bronzeville area will be upgraded in which a Community Center and many others will come and see what that area is about. Not just being part of black Milwaukee, but part of Milwaukee that should have been looked at positively. In sense by then, maybe the 115th Anniversary of Harley-Davidson would be interjected with IronElite Black Biker Jams in Bronzeville.

EXTRA FOOTAGE: Read the articles courtesy of the Milwaukee Courier and the Milwaukee Community Journal in regarding the former Malcolm X Academy.