Maria Zambrano, executive director of Excel Bridgeport, responds to assertions by retired Superior Court Judge Carmen Lopez:
Excel is a organization committed to improving the public education for all Bridgeport children so that they have an opportunity to go to college, have a successful career and ultimately, lead a successful life. Right now, the vast majority of Bridgeport students don’t have these opportunities. Right now, half of them don’t even finish high school and, of those who do, few are prepared for the rigors of college and the workplace.
Excel partners with parents, youth and community members to create a movement of people who are committed to improving the quality of education for all Bridgeport students. Through our efforts, we seek to be a vehicle for parent, student and community members to take action for the betterment of their schools. This past year, we supported the leadership of a group of parents who worked to solve what they felt was a critical problem in the school district: the lack of a robust parent engagement model in all Bridgeport schools.
For a better understanding of the work we do, I turn to Bridgeport parent, Jessica Martinez, who explained in a letter to the CT Post last month:
“Being a member of this parent problem solving group with Excel Bridgeport has completely changed my life and I’m involved on a whole different level. I now understand what is occurring in our school district, the resources that are available to parents and how to get more involved. I have increased my involvement in my son’s school and the more time I spend at the school the more I’m learning and growing into a parent advocate. Through Excel Bridgeport, I have met wonderful, knowledgeable, experienced parents that I can now call my friends. I’m proud of our group of parents and myself! My boldness has increased and I am now empowered to move forward as an active leader in my community and within the Bridgeport public school system.”
See these two letters in the CT Post for more: