Organization targets minority education in Federal Way

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By Walter Backstrom, No Excuses

We are announcing the formation in Federal Way of Active Citizens for Minority Education (ACME), an organization whose goal is to turn around the pathetic state of affairs regarding minority education in our city.

The system has failed and it is time for us citizens to take matters into our own hands.

What can we do?

Well, we can organize concerned citizens and establish programs directed toward getting minority kids turned back on to education.

They have to be made to see that getting an education is their ticket out. Our programs will include:

• Saturday tutoring programs in math and science (only 4 percent of black kids passed the science WASL).

• Saturday tutoring programs focused on teaching the proper speaking of English. Nothing labels you more than the way you speak your mother tongue. This includes debating teams where they will discuss the controversial issues of the day and giving speeches.

• We will teach interested kids how to fence, an Olympic sport that develops speed, coordination and promotes weight loss and good health.

• We will introduce kids to the games of chess and bridge — intellectual games that teach you how to think

• We will invite successful minorities to come and speak to kids about how they became successful and the importance of a good, positive attitude.

• We will solicit office supply stores to donate school supplies for minority kids.

• Parent University — teaching adults how to help their children.

According to Webster’s Dictionary, “acme” means: 1) the highest point; and 2) one that represents perfection of the thing expressed. Perfection is our goal.

We begin with the fact that minority kids are just as intelligent as the others and that they have, in many cases, been turned off and have withdrawn. We must re-engage them because we are in danger of losing an entire generation of kids. We must do this to honor all those who gave their lives in the Civil Rights Movement. They did not die in vain.

Dr. Martin Luther King said that the time is always right to do what is right. The time is right for concerned citizens to step up — step up and say “I’m mad as hell and I’m not going to take this anymore.” Step up and be a part of the solution. Step up and ask how you can help.

Please contact me, Walter Backstrom, at (253) 961-8958 and join us. We are not asking for your money. We are asking for your ideas, and we are asking for your support. It doesn’t take money — it only takes dedication. We can do this.

Federal Way resident Walter Backstrom can be reached at wkbackstrom@aol.com.

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