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The Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement has nine mandates which reflect an ongoing commitment to foster authentic, reciprocal engagement between Black families, communities, and service providers. Some of the recommendations from our education partners identified the need for Black students to have access to programs through the Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement and more importantly, connecting with organizations and post-secondary schools to execute this vision. Their recommendations are as follows:
Adhering to the calls for establishing a transparency mechanism, the Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement will share information and research findings related to our program offerings.
In 2021, The Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement conducted consultations with African, Afro-Caribbean, and Black (ACB) students, their families and community members. The consultations sought to elicit perspectives from each education partner in relation to the role of the Centre of Excellence and the TDSB as a whole.
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The Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement: Black Students Adventures in Engineering program highlights the Toronto District School Board’s (TDSB) efforts to improve pathways to science and engineering for Black students and equity through access, while also reducing barriers to post-secondary education.
This program aimed to provide support and provide access to African, Afro-Caribbean, and Black (ACB) students to post-secondary education and to promote increased participation in science and engineering pathways. The program also sought to broaden students’ academic skills, and enhance their ability to maneuver the cultural, academic, and social environment of post-secondary education.
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The Centre of Excellence for Black Student Achievement designed and delivered its third annual five-week Black Student Summer Leadership Program (BSSLP) in July 2021. The BSSLP is a unique program that offers leadership training and paid work experiences for self-identified Black secondary school students across the TDSB.
The primary aim of the BSSLP is to support the development of Black students’ leadership skills and enhance their knowledge about various careers or industries that often see an underrepresentation of individuals from Black communities. Students can be placed in opportunities which include business, media and creative industries, technology and trades, information technology and entrepreneurship.
The BSSLP also builds students’ capacity to conduct community-based research using a youth participatory action research (YPAR) method. The objectives of that aspect of the program are to: (a) deepen students’ engagement in learning; (b) strengthen leadership and empowerment (c) increase research and communication skills; (d) improve critical awareness about social problems; and (e) expand social networks in the communities of Black students.
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