Leadership Academy President & CEO Nancy Gutierrez and Newburgh Enlarged City School District Superintendent Roberto Padilla co-wrote an op-ed about the historic appointment of Meisha Porter as NYC Schools Chancellor. Porter is a Black woman and lifelong New Yorker, defying what Gutierrez and Padilla refer to as the “leave to succeed” mindset.

They write: “Educators, family members, and neighbors perpetuate that mindset when they tell stars like Porter that to be recognized for their talent, they must leave their community and lead elsewhere. The damage this causes to young people and their communities is devastating. A young person internalizes this idea of deficit, loses pride in themselves and their neighborhood, and prays for a way out. These negative notions spread, convincing community members to idolize affluent neighborhoods, and feel ashamed of themselves and their hometowns.”

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