Wednesday, October 01, 2008


> Press Release
> TO: All Media Outlets
> Subject: Sumner School and Community First
> From: Sonny Scroggins, Bias Busters of Kansas
> Topeka, KS……………… Tuesday September 30, 2008 @
> 5:45 p.m. Members of Bias Busters of Kansas will protest
> outside Topeka City Council Chambers. The purpose of the
> protest is to show support for Community First’s efforts
> to save Sumner School, an U.S. National Historic Landmark
> and the failure of the City of Topeka be a responsible
> steward for the historic Sumner Elementary School.
> Sumner School along with Monroe School serves as a reminder
> of the strides made in equal education for all Americans. To
> auction off or demolish the school would be an injustice to
> Thurgood Marshall, Lucinda Todd, Oliver Brown and all others
> who worked tirelessly on the Brown v. Topeka Board of
> Education lawsuit. Saving Sumner School will help revitalize
> the neighborhood, support economic development in the area
> and continue provide a vehicle for the annual dialogue on
> race in education held every year by Kansas National Brown
> v. Board Memorial Committee on the anniversary of the Brown
> Decision.
> The Kansas National Brown v. Board Memorial Committee has
> held the event every year since the early 1980’s at Sumner
> School. The Committee was a part of the ceremony in May 1987
> when Sumner School was placed on the Historic Register.
> It’s very ironic that in 1987 Sumner School was placed on
> the National Register, but there was no plans to save Monroe
> School. At that time, Monroe School was subject to
> demolition instead of Sumner. Now, here it is twenty-one
> years later where the community is fighting to prevent
> Sumner School from being auctioned off or demolished while
> Monroe School has been preserved and made into a museum.
> In May 2008 the National Trust for Historic Preservation
> listed the building on their list of America's Most
> Endangered Places. In 2002, the city of Topeka purchased
> Sumner Elementary with funding from the State Historic
> Preservation Office. As part of the acquisition, the city
> signed a covenant, which expires in 2012, that prevents
> demolition, and requires the city to maintain and protect
> the building, with the goal of finding a reuse for the
> facility. The city's failure to protect the site and its
> subsequent proposal to demolish it violates the covenant.
> FYI: The Kansas Fever Committee will celebrate the 115th
> anniversary of Sheldon Kindergarten on October 16, 2008 at
> 11 a.m. on the 2nd floor of the Kansas State Capitol. In
> 1893, Sheldon Kindergarten was the first black kindergarten
> west of the Mississippi used to educate children of the
> Exoduster Movement. Community First’s efforts to establish
> a charter school at Sumner to meet the needs of Kansas’
> children who fall between the cracks of the traditional
> school system; the same ideology as Charles Sheldon had when
> he provided an educational outlet for the Exodusters’ who
> moved from the South to Kansas during reconstruction, which
> is what Community First is attempting to do.
> The Public is invited to attend and participate!
> For more information contact Sonny Scroggins @785-232-3761,
> 785-845-6148,

I Challenge my Generation to Inspire Future Generations.

Yours in Christ, Sonny Scroggins


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