Excel Beyond the Bell Elementary–Quality After School in High Poverty Schools

AIM, in partnership with the Montgomery County Public School System and the Montgomery County Recreation Department, created Dream Academy (formerly known as Child First), an innovative after-school and parent-organizing program that over time will help organize and serve thousands of families in our rapidly changing-county, where 55,000 MCPS students receive subsidized meals and the school system population is now nearly 70% students of color.

Providing affordable high quality after-school enrichment programs and engaging parents in the life of the school is one of the best ways to support children and families at struggling schools. Through a sustained effort that brought together leaders of AIM congregations, principals, teachers, and Recreation staff, AIM won free, high quality after school care in two high poverty elementary schools. Dream Academy kicked off this February and will run until June, providing 240 students with after school academic enrichment, recreation time, a nutritious meal, and AIM-facilitated parent organizing and engagement.

AIM is working to Expand Dream Academy to two additional schools in the new financial year. As part of this effort, AIM gathered at the Council Budget Hearing on April 5th to push the County Council to support the expansion. South Lake Elementary School student Chilson testified about Dream Academy in front of the County Council, sharing that Dream Academy has helped him stay out of trouble in school and that “the staff and teachers at Dream Academy help me focus and calm down when I need to… the teachers at Dream Academy have helped me do better in my regular school classes.” Chilson’s mother, Adeline, also testified. She spoke of the impact Dream Academy has had on her son’s grades and behavior in school, saying “The extra hour of academic support gives my son and other students the opportunity to fully learn concepts from the normal school day…I really do appreciate his teacher and the administration for supporting my son, but Dream Academy, I mean it, is something special. The academics enrichment my son receives is very impactful… He really really loves Dream Academy so much, there is no day he doesn’t tell me he is looking forward to it.” To see a video of Chilson and Adeline’s entire testimonies, and more photos from the hearing, visit our Facebook page by clicking here.
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In the News

Justice for Historic African-American Communities

The ribbon cutting to open the new Good Hope Neighborhood Recreation Center took place on Oct. 6 in the Good Hope neighborhood of Silver Spring, Md. Local officials, residents and community members all gathered to witness the opening of the last of the four centers located in historic African-American neighborhoods to undergo renovations in Montgomery County.

Good Hope along with Ross Boddy, Scotland and Plum Gar recreation centers were overlooked and neglected for many years and dating back to the 1990s, neighborhood leaders weren’t even able to get basic repairs done in the community centers. Centers were dealing with issues such as flooding and broken windows, according to social advocacy group, Action In Montgomery (AIM).

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1200 People at GOTV and Candidate Assembly

Strong Commitments on Housing, Education and Immigration from Executive Candidates

May 30, 2018 at The People’s Community Baptist Church

It was standing room only when AIM leaders gathered to clarify the commitments of the County Executive Candidates to AIM’s bold proposals for the future of Montgomery County. The AIM demands were developed over a year of listening sessions with 3000 people throughout the county and the focus was on specific community solutions.

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Montgomery County Faith Leaders Assert Political Agenda–Afro American

Montgomery County’s clergy of color are working together across race and faith perspective to represent the needs of their congregations and ensure all voices are heard as the 2018 election season approaches.

Pastor Haywood Robinson Jr., president of the Montgomery County Black Ministers Conference and pastor of the People’s Community Baptist Church in Silver Spring, Md., joined with 20 multiethnic churches and community organizations under the Action in Montgomery (AIM) banner to host the county’s largest candidate forum, packing more than 1,200 people in the Norwood Road sanctuary to hear from six of the seven candidates for Montgomery County executive last week.

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Maryland IAF Marches on Homeland Security’s Baltimore Office

Chanting “Clarity! Compassion! No Confusion!” a group of about 50 Maryland immigration advocates marched from Baltimore City Hall to the local office of the Department of Homeland Security on Thursday to demand a meeting with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

The group of community advocates and local clergy called on the agency to clarify its policies on detaining and deporting undocumented immigrants. They also asked for information on where those who are arrested are held and requested that immigration officers remove the word ‘POLICE’ from their uniforms, to better distinguish them from Baltimore Police.

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