LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Jefferson County Public Schools will host its first ever Males of Color Celebration Wednesday night, honoring seniors who are expected to graduate with a grade point average of 3.0 or higher.
The event, which starts at 6:30 p.m. and will be held at the Louisville Memorial Auditorium, 970 South Fourth Street, is part of the district’s efforts to support males of color.
Last year, Superintendent Donna Hargens and school board member Diane Porter attended an event at the White House with President Obama, and the district joined with 59 other large urban school systems in a first-ever collective commitment to improve education for young men of color.
Nationally renowned speaker and author Victor Woods will provide the main address at tonight’s event.
Woods was arrested in 1990 by the U.S. Secret Service for orchestrating a $40 million Visa Gold credit card conspiracy and was sentenced to 78 months in a maximum-security prison. While there, he began to turn his life in a positive direction. He started mentoring inmates and giving speeches encouraging and motivating them to change their lives for the better and return to society and their families as new men.
His autobiography, “A Breed Apart,” outlines his journey. His story has been chronicled on CNN, FOX TV’s The O’Reilly Factor, BET, ABC, and CBS as well as in The Chicago Tribune, The Daily Herald and Ebony Magazine.
According to data provided by JCPS, there are approximately 300 males of color who are expected to graduate with a GPA of 3.0 or higher this June. (Note: Those numbers do not include Louisville Male High or Butler High students because those schools don’t calculate GPAs until the end of the year. In addition, Atherton High has not yet calculated GPAs).
There are a total of 6,214 seniors in the Class of 2015. Of that number, 1,379 are males of color. By comparison, there are 1,588 white males expected to graduate from JCPS this year, of which 493 are expected to graduate with a GPA of 3.0 or higher.
Males of Color with a GPA of 3.0 or higher
duPont Manual: 43
Fern Creek: 19
JCPS E-School: 1