By Bryson Kantrell Green, milwaukeecourieronline.com
As the country celebrates Teacher Appreciation Week, I’m grateful for the Black male educators in our low-income communities. They inspired me as a child and shaped my career path and they do the same for some many Milwaukee children. A recent study from Johns Hopkins University found the probability of a low-income Black male student dropping out of school is reduced by 39 percent if they have one Black teacher, and they are 29 percent more likely to consider college. I know this story well.
Mr. Eddie Jones, current assistant principal at Harold S. Vincent High School in Milwaukee, greatly influenced the course of my education and life. He was formerly a fifth grade teacher at my elementary school, Grantosa Drive Elementary School. Though Mr. Jones was never my teacher, he fostered a relationship with my family after teaching a few of my older siblings and he remains a part of our lives today. As maybe the only Black male teacher in the building, I looked up to him and he served as an early model of success and brilliance, demonstrating that a Black boy like myself could also go to college. Today, we need more teachers like Mr. Jones to do the same for the next generation of Black male students.