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NAACP Recognizes Black Teacher Whose Phonics Workbooks Improve Reading Skills in 30 Days

NAACP Berkeley President, Mansour Id Deen, presents Rosa Higgs with the Most Valuable Teacher Award for Excellence in Literacy Instruction

 

After a more than 30-year teaching career that started in Hunter’s Point, San Francisco, Rosa Higgs has been recognized by the local NAACP branch in Berkeley, California.

Higgs has been volunteering to help students at the Berkeley NAACP offices throughout the pandemic. In fact, Higgs is their number one reading expert and volunteer. She teaches students to read beyond grade level in 40 hours or less. This year is slightly different for her and her students with combo classes in-person and online. She says, “Whatever the children need is what I am going to give them. If I don’t do it who will?”

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The consensus of the Director, Mansour Id Deen, is that she produces the most outstanding reading materials with the greatest, fastest results in reading skills. Deen rates her the top phonics teacher in the area and recognizes her as the first Black woman author of phonics workbooks. He continues, “Ms. Higgs was the only volunteer educator who taught scores of students at our offices during this pandemic. Each of her students learned to read beyond grade level.” The transition from in-person to online teaching was made smooth with her supplementary YouTube lessons.

Ms. Higgs noted that the quandary for Berkeley students and educators was starkly illustrated in an academic data analysis of Black students’ underachievement scores. “The academic gap constantly rises not only in Berkeley and the Bay Area but also throughout the US.” She continues, “and there is no sign of slowing down.” Deen says, “The only prevention and the most powerful tool against poor reading skills I have ever seen is Ms. Higgs’ Read in 40 Hours or Less Workbooks.”

Many educators realize racial bias along with apathy prevents Black students from excelling. In contrast, Ms. Higgs apparently nurtures Black students’ sense of belonging and academic prowess. She is being recognized for lovingly, and generously doing her part to address the literacy crises of far too many Black students.

Joining Ms. Higgs’ celebration of excellence are the Honorable Elihu Harris, actor Danny Glover, Reverend Michael A. Smith, along with her students and parents.

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Written by PH

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