Numerous Steps, Many Stones Later
Juneteenth Becomes a Federal Holiday

Progress comes in small steps or to paraphrase a wise saying: “To move mountains, you have to lift small stones.” After many steps and stones, the United States will now recognize Juneteenth as a federal holiday to recognize, celebrate, and encourage freedom. It is amazing to realize that even as recently as a few years…

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Remembering lives lost on this tragic day — and every day As I reflect on the mounting fear and concern, including my own, about crime, violence, and homicides, up 58% in 2021, sweeping across Atlanta, I am also reminded of the relevance of June 12. It is the day that those of us who celebrate…

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Thank the Fallen:
Be an American Worth Fighting For

bird and flowers Tulsa

Memorial Day is the day our country pauses to remember and honor those who have died in the performance of their military duties. It’s celebrated on the last Monday in May. And, today, in Georgia, it is a beautiful day to feel the loving spirit of those who lost their lives. In my professional life…

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I’m joining an Annual African-American Read-In! You can too! Continue celebrating all the greatness and achievements of African Americans all year long!  Here is the live stream link to join today. Have you seen that episode of Black-ish about Black History Month? You know the one…where the kids come from school at the end of…

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Choosing to Include:
Why I’m Honored to be Recognized by the National Down Syndrome Congress

Meria Carstarphen

It is my great pleasure to be honored by the National Down Syndrome Congress at its Soiree of Stars Virtual Gala.  To be recognized as an individual who has made an impact in the Down’s community is humbling and a lifelong journey of learning. I’m certainly blessed because my experience and personal story started as…

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The New Reconstruction:
Transforming Education for the 21st Century

Meria Carstarphen speech for African American Heritage House in Chautauqua

I was recently honored to be invited as a speaker for the African American Heritage House (AAHH) 2020 Speaker Series. The members of AAHH invite scholars and notable public figures from around the country to discuss the lived experiences of African Americans over the last 400 years. It is an organization, informed by the African…

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Remembering Congressman John Lewis:
Be bold. Be courageous. Be John.

“Every generation leaves behind a legacy. What that legacy will be is determined by the people of that generation. What legacy do you want to leave behind?” – John Lewis For me, Congressman John Lewis’ legacy will be his passion and fight for civil and human rights. He believed that access to a quality education and access…

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My APS (Best) Life: Six Years of Schools, Staff, Sports, Selfies & Students First!

Meria Carstarphen My APS (Best) Life

During my final few weeks and days leading Atlanta Public Schools, the rigors of educating children amid a global pandemic and civic unrest hasn’t afforded me too many opportunities to simply sit and reflect upon the last six years. But upon reflection, I believe that my APS (best) life is the jam, and the source…

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Taking a Day for Freedom: Juneteenth Highlights Opportunity for Teaching, Learning, Understanding, and Action

Friday, June 19, should be a day of celebration. Yet, 155 years later, we still struggle. It’s an open and raw struggle for our nation about race, systemic racism, and the treatment of Black people in America. Protests fill our streets. Disagreements divide the nation. A global pandemic keeps us apart, at the very moment when we…

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