Jacksonville GradNation Community Summit
On April 4, Mayor Alvin Brown convened the Jacksonville GradNation Community Summit
with America’s Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest partnership dedicated to improving the lives of children and youth.
"Jacksonville’s success as a city depends on the success of our children and young people," said Mayor Brown. “Education is key to that success. We must have high expectations for our kids, and we must provide them with the support they need to meet and exceed those expectations. This Summit is an opportunity for all of us to work together to ensure the success of the next generation.”
Mayor Brown and the City of Jacksonville welcomed Alma Powell, chair of America’s Promise Alliance
, as the keynote speaker at the summit’s opening. The summit served as a launching pad for the development of a multi-year community action plan that outlines how Jacksonville will accelerate efforts to ensure students graduate from high school prepared for college. Locally, 72 percent of teens graduate from high school in four years, slightly under the statewide graduation rate of 75 percent, while increasing four percent over the previous year.
Attendees at Jacksonville’s Summit also heard from Dr. Howard C. Stevenson, a professor of education and Africana studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and Dr. Robert Balfanz, a co-director of the Everyone Graduates Center and a research scientist at the Center for Social Organization of Schools at Johns Hopkins University.
Jacksonville is hosting a GradNation Community Summit as part of Mayor Brown’s Education Initiatives, a series of coordinated programs including Mayor’s Mentors
, which pairs trained volunteers to provide support to at-risk middle school students, and Learn2Earn
, which provides a week of college immersion at local universities to high school students who would be the first in their families to attend college.
The premier sponsor of the national GradNation Community Summits campaign is AT&T, whose support is part of AT&T Aspire, the company’s $350 million commitment to graduate more students from high school ready for college and career. Other national summit sponsors include the Mike and Gillian Goodrich Foundation, Ford Foundation, DeVry Foundation, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, Graduation Alliance, Southwest Airlines, and the Apollo Group.
Locally, the title sponsor of the Jacksonville Grad Nation Community Summit was Florida Blue, with a $25,000 contribution to the event. Florida Blue Foundation has also offered an additional $25,000 matching grant to support the Summit and encourage support from other companies as well, bringing the company’s combined support to a total of $50,000. The PGA Tour and Siemens were also local sponsors of the Jacksonville Summit.
For more information on America’s Promise Alliance, click here
Advisory Council Meetings
Monday, May 19, 2014 at 9 a.m.
City Hall - St. James, Don Davis Conference Room
117 W. Duval St.
Jacksonville, Florida 32202