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CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 30, 1997
Re "U.S. Senate Panel Grills Officials on Ebonics Policy," Jan. 24: Your report included an opinion by Amos C. Brown: " 'Low achievement does not reside in their genes,' Brown said of black youth, suggesting that they turn off television at night and focus more on homework." He might also have added that if students can understand what they see on television (and in movies) they can certainly understand a teacher in the classroom, regardless of how they may communicate with each other.
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NEWS
August 10, 1997 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Black psychologists got a crash course in the West African origins of black American English and were urged to keep up the fight to have U.S. schools recognize ebonics' linguistic value. "We want to remove the stigma that the language our kids speak is a deficient language," said psychologist Robert Williams, the man who coined the word "ebonics." He told members of the Assn.
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NEWS
December 27, 1996 | From Associated Press
After many telephone conversations with Oakland school officials, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said Thursday that he is softening his position on the district's plan to incorporate black English into its curriculum. "Reaching out to find our youth where they are and to building a bridge is the thing to do," Jackson said in a telephone interview from his home in Chicago.
NEWS
May 6, 1997 | RICHARD LEE COLVIN, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
The Oakland schools task force that six months ago created an international furor by declaring the speech patterns of some African American students a separate "genetically based" language--one deserving of being preserved in classrooms--has issued a new, distinctly less controversial report that does not even use the term "ebonics."
NEWS
December 23, 1996 | From Times Wire Services
Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson on Sunday blasted the Oakland school board's decision to recognize so-called black English, or Ebonics, as a primary language for many of its black students. Jackson said the resolution would undermine black students' chances for success. "I understand the attempt to reach out to these children, but this is an unacceptable surrender borderlining on disgrace. . . .
NEWS
January 17, 1997 | KENNETH R. WEISS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Having retracted the most controversial portions of their policy on Ebonics, Oakland school officials said Thursday that they hope to finally shed the distraction of national attention and concentrate on improving the poor test scores of African American students.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 14, 1997 | AMY PYLE, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
Trying to gingerly sidestep the Ebonics controversy, the Los Angeles Board of Education on Monday put off debating a proposal to train all 32,000 teachers in how to better cope with students who use African American speech patterns. Without comment, the board sent the resolution to committee for review and revision.
NEWS
January 4, 1997 | JUDY PASTERNAK, TIMES STAFF WRITER
The nation's largest society of linguistic scholars on Friday strongly supported the Oakland School Board's recognition of Ebonics, as an African American speech pattern is becoming known. The Linguistic Society of America commended Oakland's plan, adopted Dec. 18, to use Ebonics to teach some black students standard English, calling the action "linguistically and pedagogically sound."
NEWS
May 6, 1997 | RICHARD LEE COLVIN, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
The Oakland schools task force that six months ago created an international furor by declaring the speech patterns of some African American students a separate "genetically based" language--one deserving of being preserved in classrooms--has issued a new, distinctly less controversial report that does not even use the term "ebonics."
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 26, 1997
Los Angeles School Board member Barbara Boudreaux plans to reintroduce her resolution Monday to require mandatory training in Ebonics for all Los Angeles Unified School District teachers. The proposal differs in only one major way from the one that was shifted to a committee for further study two weeks ago: It does not use the word "Ebonics," a term combining ebony and phonics that was coined in the early 1970s to describe the speech patterns of some African Americans.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 12, 1997
A Los Angeles School Board majority on Monday stalled the divisive debate over Ebonics, postponing further consideration on how to help all students master mainstream English until after the important $2.4-billion school bond vote on the April 8 municipal ballot. It was a common-sense decision but it's a shame it took weeks of effort to arrive at something so perfectly obvious.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 11, 1997 | AMY PYLE, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
Los Angeles school board member Barbara Boudreaux's effort to expand Ebonics programs was rejected Monday by the Board of Education in favor of further study of existing programs and the cost of broadening them, drawing groans as well as applause from the audience. Though Boudreaux said little immediately after her colleagues voted 4 to 3 for additional analysis, due May 1, later she slammed the action as a political maneuver aimed at diffusing the controversy.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 10, 1997 | AMY PYLE, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
Ebonics, the controversy of the moment, returns to the Los Angeles Board of Education today in two incarnations--the expansive one and the diminutive one. One board member, Barbara Boudreaux, wants to ride the tide of public awareness about the academic struggles of African Americans and make specialized English language instruction available to all 93,000 black students in the Los Angeles Unified School District.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 9, 1997
The Times has devoted many column inches to the issue of our schools and their failure to produce graduates with acceptable grades. The debate over Ebonics and other experiments in methodology has left us at square one, with failing grades and miles behind other countries. The problem grows as "experts" come up with shortcuts and new technology, while serious students do succeed. In my travels I sat in on a fascinating learning experience. In Rome I witnessed a class for people of all ages.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 31, 1997 | AMY PYLE, TIMES EDUCATION WRITER
Los Angeles school board member Barbara Boudreaux, in an attempt to gain her colleagues' support for her Ebonics resolution, further softened it Thursday by offering to delete the word Ebonics and to include all students with language difficulties.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 31, 1997 | ELDRIDGE CLEAVER, Eldridge Cleaver, the former minister of information of the Black Panther Party, is assistant facilitator at the Spiritual Awareness Learning Center in Fontana. His upcoming book is "The Eldridge Cleaver Anthology."
There are children who go around biting other children. Should our response be to legalize and institutionalize cannibalism and hand out bottles of ketchup? I am one of the most liberal people in the world. And I am all for black pride. I am not just a freedom talker; I am a freedom fighter. But I say no to Ebonics. When I was growing up, what is now being euphemistically called Ebonics was accurately called bad English. I have the greatest respect for linguistic diversity.
NEWS
January 24, 1997 | MARC LACEY, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Members of the Oakland school district defended their Ebonics policy before a U.S. Senate panel Thursday, insisting that federal money is not going to be used to instruct students in black English. But the delegation of school officials, accompanied by an Oakland student and the linguist who coined the term Ebonics, were subjected to pointed questions from skeptical senators, who noted that they control $10 billion in federal education funding.
NEWS
January 16, 1997 | KENNETH R. WEISS and RICHARD LEE COLVIN, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
After enduring a month of blistering criticism for its resolution calling Ebonics a language distinct from English, the Oakland Board of Education on Wednesday retracted the two points that most enraged its critics. In a unanimous vote, the seven-member board dropped a reference to African American speech as a "genetically based" language and eliminated a proposal that students be taught in Ebonics, a word coined from "ebony" and "phonics."
NEWS
January 31, 1997 | LYNELL GEORGE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Ice Cube as primer? Oprah as teaching aide? Street-smart Shakespeare? Well, why not? sasses Deborah Kellar, actress and "teaching artist." Think about it: If it pushes kids into lively conversation about language, forces them to consider phonics, assonance, alliteration, the way sound rolls around in the mouth and off the tongue, it's certainly worth a try.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 30, 1997
Re "U.S. Senate Panel Grills Officials on Ebonics Policy," Jan. 24: Your report included an opinion by Amos C. Brown: " 'Low achievement does not reside in their genes,' Brown said of black youth, suggesting that they turn off television at night and focus more on homework." He might also have added that if students can understand what they see on television (and in movies) they can certainly understand a teacher in the classroom, regardless of how they may communicate with each other.
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