‘Get on the Bus’ Community Education Tour Opa-locka First Stop for Superintendent Carvalho

By Christina Gordon….

Commissioner Rose Tydus, Dr. Susan McEchen, Mayor Joseph L. Kelley, Superintendent Carvalho, Wilbert T. Holloway, Commissioner Dorothy “Dottie” Johnson with Erick Sanchez, Luis Sanchez and Kiara Pemberton-Murphy, Steel Band members at Dr. Robert B. Young Elementary.

“This is where the magic happens, at the hands of teachers and dedicated principals in partnerships with Mayor Joseph L. Kelley, the Commission, the entire City and the Miami-Dade Public School System,” stated Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho at the conclusion of the “Get on the Bus” Tour where District 1 School Board Member Dr. Wilbert “Tee” Holloway, Opa-locka Officials and an assembly of distinguished guests gave raving reviews of Dr. Robert B. Ingram and Nathan B. Young Elementary Schools, after the first stop of this year’s Community Educational Tour which was set in motion by Mayor Kelley at Historic City Hall at 9 AM, Thursday, September 2, 2010 in the Great City of Opa-locka.

“These two schools ‘popped’ academically in Reading, Math and Science, in just one year, where most schools across the State declined dramatically,” stated Superintendent Carvalho. Having met and observed some of the teachers and staff who creatively encourage the students to learn and take on leadership roles, the Superintendent commented in one classroom, “If every fourth grade was like this, we would have no academic problems.”

According to Mayor Joseph L. Kelley, “It was important for Superintendent Carvalho to witness our commitment to Education, see our young people in action and learn of our challenges. We are making sure our children’s education is paramount. This won’t be the last visit.”

Dr. Holloway, who introduced himself as the bridge between the Community and the School Administration stated, “We are at that level, where we are trying to replicate all the goodness within our schools… I am happy to report that in District one, we do not have any ‘F’ schools for the second year in a row and we must continue to maintain that level of achievement.” Holloway continued, “The growth in Opa-locka is a part of all that transformation in education that we are going to present to the South Florida Community.”

“The teacher’s care, the principals care, the community cares,” Commissioner Rose Tydus noted as she marked the tour, “to see how our young people are excelling,” as a historical moment and a great day in the life of the City of Opa-locka. The visit from Miami-Dade, according to Commissioner Dorothy “Dottie” Johnson, “was an excellent opportunity to bring some deficiencies that we saw on the campus.” She concluded, “Once we present our educational compact, I think the ‘Sky is the Limit’… I just look forward to bringing great resources back to the City.”

Superintendent Carvalho said he is not taking this tour lightly. He noted that he brought members of his cabinet, “So you’ll KNOW who’s who and so you can go directly to the person that can address the issues.” The Superintendent found it especially impressive that, at both schools, the students all knew their City Officials by name. “It proves to me that each adult is taking ownership and responsibility for kids, for classrooms, for teachers and for the schools.” He concluded, “It elevates the caliber of community and the quality of life by improving public education. I’m inspired by the fact that we can do it, if we hold hands, and between our hands, our kids.”

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