The Importance of Literacy and Math

Paul Hubbard

By Paul Hubbard
Guest Column

Governor DeWine was interviewed by a Toledo Network TV Station about his plans for 2024. Improvement in our students’ educational attainment is one of his 2024 goals. Toledo’s Economic Development Director also has been on TV talking about the future development that will take place in Toledo.

In order for our African American kids and young adults to be part of Toledo’s future they have to become more proficient in literacy and math. The Black community and Black politicians will need to make sure that the educational improvements in the areas of literacy and math reach our community and schools.

Child literacy is more than an educational benchmark; it’s the cornerstone upon which we build our children’s future. In a world dominated by information and communication, the ability to read, comprehend and analyze is not just beneficial – it’s essential, says Detroit City Council Member Mary Waters.

For years, Toledo has grappled with a troubling literacy crisis, Reading scores among Toledo students have consistently ranked among the nation’s average for African American students on the National Assessment of Educational Progress. I am asking the Toledo educational leadership (public, charter and community) and Black pollical leadership to advocate and ensure the governor’s education improvement resources reach our Black Students.

Here are steps I propose we continue to lean into:

Community-driven literacy and math programs; create opportunities for community members and churches to be involved in mentoring; guiding our kids in reading and math.

Local business collaborations: forge partnerships with businesses to finance reading and math initiatives and supply schools with necessary reading and math learning materials.

Support for parents: offer resources and workshops, enabling parents to be effective champions for their children’s reading and math endeavors. Parental involvement is very important for student success. We need transparent monitoring of fund utilization for maximum student success.

As Toledo is going through a comeback; let’s come together for the sake of all our students and especially the needs of our low-income students.

Paul L. Hubbard MSW. Chair of the Board of Maritime Academy.