Twist and Shout

Twist and Shout
Life is never straight (Joey Kulkin photo)

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Trentonian TV Production Notes: "Freedom" Episode 5


TRENTON -- Nancy Dent, Bill McLaughlin and Baye Kemit were the guests this week.

McLaughlin is an ex-cop in Trenton who ran the city's "Weed and Seed" program through the rec department. The only problem, he said, is that the rec department is a "a circus" on Mack's watch and has disregarded the program, a gardening initiative tied to city elementary schools.

Kemit is the principal at the Garvey School, or the Egun Omode School, where, according to its website "African culture is practiced." Kemit's golden rule of education is that it starts with discipline, and once you've established what students can and cannot do in a learning environment, the teaching and learning falls into place.

If your kid goes to Garvey, he said, you've "passed the baton" of discipline to Kemit and his staff. "If you don't have discipline, you can't go anywhere with these kids. When you walk in that door," he said, tapping his chest like he's the almighty, "I'm him."

Kemit said the Trenton School District is not designed to teach black children while touching on Trenton Mayor Tony Mack and the many 1-on-1 conversations they've had: The chats, he said, "don't translate back into implementation. ... His heart is in the right place, but something has gone awry. ... He calls himself the 'Education Mayor' but you have to put people in place to to put it foward.'

The Garvey School is about 6 weeks away from staging its 90-minute extravaganza called "The Journey." This was the best part of the chat because Kemit said he'll do whatever it takes to get Trenton's public schools to attend the 6 shows over two days May 10-11 -- and that includes arranging transportation.



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Here's a picture of Baye's son as dad spoke with Freedom: