Imprint.City Welcomes School Board Commissioner, Matt Haney & CNN Correspondent, Van Jones to the Bayview
Posted by Tyra Fennell in Arts & Economic Development, Blog, Kommunity Kiki, Politics, Tyra's World on July 9, 2016
On Wednesday, June 29th, Imprint.City in partnership with Laughing Monk Brewing hosted CNN Correspondent and Founder of Rebuild the Dream, Van Jones and President of the San Francisco Unified School District Board of Education, Matt Haney as well as community activist, Lateefah Simon and Black Lives Matter founder, Alicia Garza in an engaging, in-depth evening discussion covering topics ranging from the digital divide, education and criminal justice reform.
The Bayview Hunters Point neighborhood has recently seen robust protests, sparked by the Mario Woods and Jessica Williams police related shootings, eventually leading to the resignation of former Police Chief Greg Suhr. The aforementioned occurrences and Imprint.City being located one block away from where the Mario Woods shooting took place and the location of his memorial, made this conversation even more poignant, welcoming over one hundred attendees and providing them with a mechanism to process and discuss possible solutions.
“Bayview is often the subject of many topics dominating news headlines however rarely do residents have the opportunity to engage with public figures like Van Jones, who are activity moving the needle on issues such as criminal justice reform and the digital divide. Imprint.City was honored that Commissioner Matt Haney facilitated the introduction that lead to Van Jones being here,” says Imprint.City founder, Tyra Fennell.
Commissioner Matt Haney, who lead the conversation, spoke candidly about the lack of diversity in technology education.
“We had a study that came out in San Francisco to find what percentage of our students were learning coding in our schools and the number was more shocking than what we thought. Less than 5% of our students in SFUSD that were taking computer science classes and almost all of those students were in high school; almost all of those students were white, Asian and overwhelmingly male. We not only need to address this but also need to find real solutions that reflect the scale of the challenge we face. We don’t want coding in some of our schools, for some of our kids but we want coding in all of our schools.” explained Commissioner Haney.
Tyra Fennell, founder of Imprint.City, an organization, developing arts and culture events in underserved communities and industrial spaces, encouraging increased foot traffic and economic development has been producing programs in Bayview for many years but has now re-directed focus on Egbert Avenue where Imprint.City is located. Imprint.City produces the annual Tribe City Festival (formally the Black Love Festival at Heron’s Head Eco Center on Saturday, July 16th with festival founder and community activist, Etecia Brown. The organization also seeks to support science, technology, arts, engineering and math (S.T.E.A.M) in the Bayview by producing two additional annual S.T.E.A.M focused festivals including the Science, Participation, Arts, Radicalism and Community Festival (S.P.A.R.C Fest) featuring the fire art of Hunter’s Point Shipyard artist collective, the Flaming Lotus Girls. Imprint.City will also produce the BayviewLIVE Festival, providing a platform for twenty Bayview youth, who took rigorous coding classes from Mission Bit, to display their final projects during a major music and arts festival. BayviewLIVE will take place on October 22nd, 2016.
For more information on Imprint.City programs, please visit www.imprintcity.org