Bernadeia Johnson

Recent Articles

Letter to the Editor: Why is the superintendent of the MPS silent on segregation at Richard Green Central?


Segregation is happening right in our neighborhood at Richard Green Central Park School. This school is under scrutiny due to the segregation of African American and Latino students. Students are separated and placed into classrooms based upon their last names in order to determine if a student will be placed in a Spanish- or English-speaking class. Many parents, community members, educators, and students have voiced their concerns about the maltreatment of students, lack of concern for underrepresented populations and the segregation, which has created a hostile school environment. The Superintendent Bernadeia Johnson has been contacted numerous times about this matter, but she fails to respond and is not concerned with ensuring that the Minneapolis Public Schools are adhering to school laws. Continue Reading →

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From Selma, Alabama to Minneapolis

MPS superintendent reflects on voting rights, proposed voter ID amendment

By Alleen Brown

Contributing Writer


At a recent anti-voter ID amendment rally, Minneapolis Public Schools Supt. Bernadeia Johnson spoke to the crowd about her family’s fight for voter rights in Selma, Alabama, in the 1960s. Although she can’t speak for the district, Johnson is decidedly anti-amendment, and her growing-up years in the heart of the voting rights movement in tiny Selma, Alabama, get the credit for her stance. The Twin Cities Daily Planet (DP) sat down with Johnson (BJ) to talk about growing up in Selma and about what she thinks about Minnesota’s proposed voter ID amendment.  To read more about this story, pick up a copy of the MSR newspaper:


Or become an MSR subscriber: Continue Reading →

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Wanted: Northside residents with passion for helping families


African American community members deliver message of the Zone

By Vickie Evans-Nash

Contributing Writer 

Later this summer, the Northside Achievement Zone (NAZ) will be hiring just under 30 people to fill new employment slots. They are looking for people who have a firm understanding of the community and the families they will be recruiting to be a part of the NAZ initiative to support the families until their children enter college. People like Andre Dukes. Born and raised in South Minneapolis, Dukes is an assistant pastor at Shiloh Temple church who has always had an interest in reducing youth violence. A few years ago he developed a team of residents who went knocking on the doors of Northside residents to talk to them about safety and non-violence. Continue Reading →

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Helping prepare our high school seniors for college



Dear MPS partners and friends:
January 20 was an exciting day in Minneapolis, as national leaders visited to focus on the work that we do every day to prepare students for college and career. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan visited South High School to talk with the senior class and their parents about college affordability and the new simplified Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Senator Amy Klobuchar, Senator Al Franken and Mayor R.T. Rybak, who have consistently demonstrated their support for Minneapolis schools, also addressed students. Visit the MPS website ( to view our video of the event. What impressed me the most during the visit was the leadership of our students, who raised intelligent, thoughtful and authentic questions during their conversation with Secretary Duncan. Continue Reading →

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Time to choose the right school for your children’s success


Dear families,
This is an exciting time of year. Teachers and students are settling back in their classrooms after winter break and have important work ahead in the last semester of the school year. Our kindergarten students are striving to meet literacy goals, MCA-II tests are right around the corner, and many of our students are preparing to start a new phase of their academic careers. Fifth-grade students are preparing to enter middle school, eighth-grade students are preparing to enter high school, and our high school seniors are preparing for college and career paths. Each day, our students are gaining an urban education experience as they prepare to become global citizens. Continue Reading →

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The best gift for our students: supporting their education



As we enter the holiday season and the season of giving, I wanted to reach out to our families and friends in Minneapolis. The best gift that a child can receive is your support in his or her pursuit of a high-quality education experience. There is nothing more important than preparing students to be successful. I see the future leaders of Minneapolis and our world in the bright eyes and intelligence of our students. The most essential factor driving student achievement is the effectiveness of classroom teachers. Continue Reading →

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Minneapolis: A Tale of Two Cities



By Charles Hallman

Staff Writer


A new Minneapolis Foundation report claims that racial disparities and other factors have essentially changed Minneapolis into “two cities” — one for the haves and another for the have-nots. “What are we going to do?” Foundation Vice President Karen Kelley-Ariwoola asked as she recently discussed the findings of the 60-page “OneMinneapolis” report released in October. Co-authored with the Wilder Foundation, the Minneapolis Foundation report selected 24 community indicators that reflect the city’s educational, economic and social environment. It sketched “a portrait of the Minneapolis landscape” and found disparities in such areas as education, children and youth, and economic vitality. The report’s “Points of Concern” include:

• 83 percent of the jobs in Minneapolis are held by Whites. Continue Reading →

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