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Horace Mann Students sitting in a garden, wearing sweatshirts they designed that read "Food, equality and justice for all".

HORACE MANN SCHOOL

Location: The Bronx, New York

​Focus: Environmental Justice, Community Engagement, and Advocacy. 

BACKGROUND

Mr. Asoluka, a pioneering educator, created his own NewComm initiative to infuse social justice concepts into the English curriculum and wanted to add another dimension.

 

As one of Horace Mann School's Deans and English faculty, Mr. Asoluka invited us to introduce environmental justice-oriented readings and materials into his high school English classroom, in addition to encouraging out-of-class community engagement. 

In the end, we helped in the continued development of his curriculum to recognize and study People of Color (POC) authors outside of the white literary canon, and encourage his students to utilize literary analysis as a guide for critical thinking, mindful collaboration, and impactful action in relation to issues within their own communities.

DELIVERABLES

Together, we integrated an introduction to activism and environmental/ climate justice into the English classroom, such as exploring how the assigned readings by BIPOC authors translated to current justice issues.

Results

We completed a year-long, four-part curriculum, reading 8 literary works from 5 different cultures covering social and environmental issues.

​Students developed a clothing line and campaign bringing awareness to food inequity, and was a featured seller at the People's Forum.

Students contributed to S:E social media by creating Instagram interviews to talk about youth activism. 

Students forged new connections with various Horace Mann alumni.

Project Highlights

Students found local artist Sabrina Tran and worked with her to create a clothing design that would promote food justice and highlight different ways that community members could get involved. Selling their merchandise also helped to fundraise for Start: Empowerment's work.

We then showcased the design at The People's Forum, where it was used as a tool to spark conversation about Food Justice in NYC. 

A Horace Mann student wearing a sweatshirt reading "Food, Equality and Justice For All".
Two Horace Mann students wearing their sweatshirts, sitting with their arms around each other.

Photos from the student-run modeling shoot at Horace Mann school.

Five Horace Mann students wearing their sweatshirts, sitting in a garden,

NEWCOMM X Start:Empowerment in collaboration with local artist SabnaTran.

Community Collaborations:

We brought in long-time advocate for equitable food systems and community resilience, Karen Washington, who talked to the Horace Mann students about food justice, its environmental and social impacts, and what they could do in their communities right now.

A designed screenshot of a Zoom speakership  call between Karen Washington and Horace Mann students,

Designed screenshots from the Zoom speakership between Karen Washington and the Horace Mann students.

With Generous Support From:

NYU logo.
Horace Mann School logo.
New Comm Project logo.
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