The War Report on Public Education, May 15, 2016

The War Report on Public Education with Dr James Avington Miller Jr
Show Headline: 
The War Report on Public Education
Show Sub Headline: 
Guests, Eve Shippens, Dr. Barbara Seals Nevergold, Jennifer Mecozzi and Sharon Belton-Cottman

The War Report on Public Education with Dr James A. Miller Jr.

First Hour: Paulette woods, Hope Jay, Jennifer Mecozzi and Eve Shippen

Second hour: Dr. Barbara A.Nevergold and Sharon Belton-cottoman

Headlined, The War Report on Public Education, May 15, 2016

Broadcast Date: 
May 15, 2016

Focus on Buffalo - The People Over the Corporate Ed Reformers – the New Faces of a Publically Elected School Board in a Neoliberal City

Please join Internet radio host Dr. James Avington Miller Jr. for a special two-hour program focusing on the recent school board elections in Buffalo and the almost complete overturn of the old neoliberal school board. This has been a great victory in the war on public education.

The first hour Dr. Miller will be joined by Eve Shippens and three of the "new faces" - the winners in the election - Paulette Woods, Hope Jay, and Jennifer Mecozzi.

The second hour Dr. Miller will be joined by Dr. Barbara A. Nevergold and Sharon Belton -Cottman, the re-elected school board member from the Buffalo School Board.

We will have the new power majority on this week's show and will hear about their important victory over the monied and rich corporate backed reformers.

Please listen this Sunday and join the war against public education. Victory is at hand!


Guest, Eve Shippens

Guest Name: 
Eve Shippens
Guest Category: 
Guest Occupation: 
Teacher, Parent, Education Activist
Guest Biography: 

Eve Shippens is a parent, teacher and alumni of the Buffalo Public Schools. She is fighting for the children's right to an equitable, quality, enriching public education. Buffalo has a child poverty rate of close to 50% and is one of the most segregated cities in the country. Eve became active in the fight when the state of New York declared her school, along with three others, out of time and decided to shut them down. She fought with hundreds of students, teachers, families and other activists to keep the schools open and public!

Guest, Dr Barbara Seals Nevergold

Guest Name: 
Dr Barbara Seals Nevergold
Barbara Nevergold
Guest Category: 
Guest Occupation: 
At Large Member of the Buffalo Board of Education
Guest Biography: 

Dr. Barbara Seals Nevergold is an At Large Member of the Buffalo Board of Education.

A native of Louisiana, Ms. Seals Nevergold moved to the East side of Buffalo in 1947 with her parents, the late Clara Ellis Seals and Rev. Willie B. Seals, seven brothers and sister. She is a graduate of the Buffalo Public Schools and Buffalo State College, where she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in French Education. She is also an alumnus of the University at Buffalo with Masters of Education degrees in French Education and Counseling Education. In 1986 she earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree at UB in Counseling Education. Dr. Seals Nevergold also studied French at Laval University in Quebec, Canada and at the University of Dijon in Dijon, France.

Dr. Seals Nevergold began her career as a French teacher in the Buffalo School System. She also worked as a guidance counselor in the system. Subsequent positions have included: Executive Director of Niagara Frontier Association for Sickle Cell Disease, Inc.; Vice President for Children's Services at Friendship House of Western New York, Inc.; CEO of Planned Parenthood of Buffalo and Erie County, Inc.; and Regional Director for Berkshire Farm Center. Dr. Seals Nevergold was, until recently, the Director of Student Support Services at the University of Buffalo's Educational Opportunity Center. She has also held adjunct instructional positions at Empire State College and the University at Buffalo. Beginning in the Fall of 2006, Dr. Nevergold and fellow co-founder, Dr. Peggy Brooks-Bertram, of the Uncrowned Queens Institute began working full-time on the establishment of the Uncrowned Queens Center for Excellence at the University at Buffalo.

The Uncrowned Queens Center for Excellence will enhance the work of the Institute by giving it a home and supporting the extension of the numerous programs developed and implemented by the Institute. The Uncrowned Queens Institute, founded in 1999 by Drs. Seals Nevergold and Brooks-Bertram, strives to promote the collection and dissemination of the individual histories of women, women's organizations and women's collective history; and to teach and educate women on the use of technology to preserve and disseminate their histories.

Dr. Seals Nevergold is an educator, administrator, community and political activist. She has been a vocal advocate for parental involvement in the public schools. In 1989, she also co-founded, with Dr. Brooks-Bertram, Concerned Parents and Citizens for Quality Education, Inc. CPCQE was credited with increasing public awareness of educational issues and organizing parents as effective advocates. In addition, she served on a number of committees and task forces established by the Buffalo Board of Education. An unsuccessful run for school board in 1993 was nonetheless successful in demonstrating the importance of parental involvement in local school politics.

Dr. Seals Nevergold has served in leadership roles on numerous local and national boards. She serves on the boards of Graycliff Conservancy, Buffalo Psychiatric Center and the Afro American Historical Association of the Niagara Frontier, Inc. Previous board memberships have included the Studio Arena Theatre, Heritage Centers, Buffalo General Hospital, Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Inc., Kaleida Health Trustee Steering Committee, Gethsemane Manor Senior Citizen Home, St. John Christian Academy, Columbus Hospital, the YWCA of Buffalo and Erie County, the Buffalo Rotary Club, the Western New York Council for African Relief, and the Buffalo Alliance for Education.

She is the author of: “From Pan Am Protests to the Niagara Movement: the Buffalo Connection (2005); “Fantastic Color & Special Effects: The Seals Ebony Studio” in Western New York Heritage Magazine (Spring, 2002); “To Be an Instrument for Their Voices: Finding, Writing and Sharing Family Histories” in Afro-Americans in New York Life and History, (July 2001); and “Transracial Adoption: In the Child's Best Interest?” in African America Women's Health and Social Issues, Catherine F. Collins (editor). Drs. Seals Nevergold and Brooks-Bertram have co-authored Uncrowned Queens: African American Community Builders of Western New York, Vol. 1 (2002), Vol. 2 (2003) and Vol. 3 (2005). A family historian, Dr. Seals Nevergold is currently writing a family history of her maternal family. She has also given numerous presentations and workshops at conferences.

Dr. Seals Nevergold has received numerous awards including: the Williams Wells Brown Award in recognition of her efforts to preserve local African American history; the UB Star Award 2001 for outstanding work on the Pan-American Exposition centennial celebration; the Excellence in Education Award from Xi Epsilon Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.; the Community Service Award from the Mary B. Talbert Civic and Cultural Club; the Community Service Awards from the Community Action Organization and the Bufffalo Chapter NAACP (2006). She and Dr. Brooks-Bertram were also recipients of the Brotherhood-Sisterhood Award for Education from the National Conference for Community and Justice (2005) and the Keeper of the Flame Award from the National Women’s Hall of Fame (2006).

Dr. Seals Nevergold has been a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Xi Epsilon Omega Chapter, Inc. since 1987. She has served the Sorority in several capacities, including many years as Ivy Leaf Reporter. In addition, she is a member of the Erie County Chapter of the Links, Inc. She has served on the Christian Education Ministry and is active in other activities at her church, St. John Baptist Church. Dr. Seals Nevergold is married to Paul R. Nevergold and they have two adult children, Alanna Elizabeth Nevergold Marrow and Kyle Robert and two grandchildren, Naia Ellison Reese Marrow and Cameron Josef Nevergold.

Guest, Jennifer Mecozzi

Guest Name: 
Jennifer Mecozzi
Jennifer Mecozzi
Guest Category: 
Guest Occupation: 
Buffalo Board of Education Member, parent, activist
Guest Biography: 

Jennifer Mecozzi is a newly elected member of the Buffalo School Board. She is a parent of four amazing children first and foremost. Beyond that she is a powerful Community Advocate who has worked diligently with many organizations to make the Westside of Buffalo a better place for all residents. Jenn is also a winning softball coach with a passion for developing young girls into empowered women. She has not only coached her girls but mentored them and built lasting relationships with the parents the have improved families in her community. 

There is no one who knows the potential and the challenges in Buffalo's West District better than Jennifer Mecozzi. The School Board is at a point where the issues have distracted the board from the real issue which is the education and betterment of the children who are in the schools. That cannot be accomplished without REAL parent engagement by someone who knows what its like to be a struggling parent trying to do what’s best for their kids.

Jen Mecozzi has the experience and background rooted in work with the community to bring parents, students and teachers together and she will uplift Buffalo Public Schools in her newly elected position.

Guest, Sharon Belton-Cottman

Guest Name: 
Sharon Belton-Cottman
Guest Occupation: 
Buffalo Board of Education Member, Education Advocate
Guest Biography: 

Elected by the board in Spring 2010 to represent the students and parents in the Ferry District, Sharon hit the deck running, while acknowledging that each of her life experiences have prepared her for this moment in time. Sharon is a product of the WNY educational system, attending Schools #47, Clinton Jr. High, Genesee, Humboldt, East High, Canisius College, and receiving an undergraduate degree at Medaille College.

Sharon’s career has primarily been in insurance, and the banking and financial industries. Currently she works as a licensed Home Mortgage Consultant with Wells Fargo Home Mortgage.  Previous careers include being a Substitute Teacher, Insurance Supervisor with Goldome Agency and Empire Realty, an Insurance Consultant with Allstate, Community Lending Officer with Charter One Bank, Loan Officer with Citizens Bank and Community Advocator.  Sharon is a mother, grandmother, and member of True Bethel Baptist Church, Brunswick Block Club, Hamlin Park Tax Payer Association, Women of Worth, and the Erie Niagara Sunrise Exchange Club.

Sharon is an advocate and passionate defender of her district and all the children in the City Of Buffalo. For the first two years of her tenure, Sharon worked as the Chair of Finance and Operations, demanding more transparency and accountability. An avid participate in board committees and task forces within the District, Sharon is committed to improving the educational system in Buffalo. 

Of the Buffalo Public Schools, Sharon has gone on record to state: “We are in a great time in the history of Buffalo Public Schools with all the stakeholders who are interested in assisting us in advancing our district.  We have a wealth of opportunity in a Superintendent who is experienced in turning failing district around, our stakeholders, such as ‘Say Yes To Education’ and other community partners, and a sound school board. The community can be assured that we now have the best opportunity in decades to improve our schools and provide our children with a world-class education!”

The War Report on Public Education

The War Report on Public Education with Dr James Avington Miller Jr
Show Host: 
Dr. James Avington Miller Jr.

The format of THE WAR REPORT ON PUBLIC EDUCATION explores one of the most important events in our life time - the total takeover of our educational system by corporate interests. This show is about the 'corporate' war on public education and the rising public resistance movement to the war. Dr. James Avington Miller, Jr. invites guests from all over who join the rising public resistance movement against the corporate greed taking on our public school system. He is interested in growing a grass-roots movement here in the United States and in Europe against the 'corporate interests' that are limiting both teachers and students everywhere.

This October 2015 he is taking his show on the road as he embarks on a very special project. His long awaited project ‘The People’s Story' is an effort to reach out to those individuals whose voices are not being heard in educational arenas everywhere. He will be interviewing, filming and collecting stories from parents, teachers, students and community members in the rural and urban areas of the Eastern United States to include Maine, Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, Maryland and Washington D.C. Many lives are being impacted and harmed by the ongoing corporate war on public education that exists today. The consequence of the rapid privatization of our schools is inhumane and devastating to our teachers, schools and most importantly, our children.

His primary mission is to create a documentary/television series for PBS and the Arts & Entertainment Channel that will expose the human cost of man’s inhumanity to man. The objective is to document people’s stories from each state and create a one hour TV Episode for that state evolving into a 30-35 part series. Dr. Miller expects to have the first TV show ready by next summer. This will propel the ‘corporate war on public education’ front and center as a local, state and national campaign issue. Determined to awaken the world on a national level by providing a series of programs that will lead to understanding the whole picture – he hopes to demand an end to the Corporate Elite and their destruction of public education.

Dr. Miller is seeking funding for ‘The People’s Story’ project from friends, family and the public to cover the expenses that this will entail. If you care about the future of education, please support this most important project and be part of history in the making. This has been and will continue to be Dr. Miller's dream to complete and certainly his life's legacy.