Neighbors in the News: Quiana Singleton Featured on WCPN Radio

Neighbors in the News: Quiana Singleton Featured on WCPN Radio

Local radio station, 90.3 WCPN ideastream, recently did a story about people coming together to plant more trees in Central and other communities in Cleveland. The Cleveland Tree Plan has a goal to plant more trees in the inner city of Cleveland. Trees are important to a neighborhood because they can actually make a community healthier to live in.

Quiana Singleton is Promise Ambassador and Climate Ambassador for Burton Bell Carr Development agency. She is helping to plant trees in Central. Quiana was interviewed about all the work she is doing to increase greenery in Central:

Quiana Singleton works on planting a tree
Quiana Singleton works on planting a tree

One of those ambassadors, Quiana Singleton, through a grant from Cleveland Neighborhood Progress, has developed a project for school-aged children in Kinsman. Her goal is to teach the kids at Anton Grdina School, how to plant and care for new trees.

On a recent sunny September morning Singleton, with the help of arborists from Holden Arboretum and the Western Reserve Land Conservancy kicked off the first session of the pilot project with 12 sixth graders on the school grounds, 2995 E, 71st St.  With shovels in hand the students dug up dirt, put compost around the newly-planted roots, learned the benefits of earth worms and possibly gained a greater appreciation for trees.

Singleton fancies herself as a tree prophet whose goal is to gather disciples in the quest to bring more trees and maintained greens space to Kinsman and the adjacent Central neighborhoods.

She is a passionate advocate for the neighborhood and for respecting trees.

“They get stressed and people doesn’t know that. They do not know that trees actually get stressed. When they’re cutting the grasses right. When it hits the tree because it’s like when you hit the tree and like when you hit your feet you’re like ahhh. You know that feeling? I be wondering if the tree feels like that because the trees is alive,” Singleton said.

You can listen to the interview or read the story online here: http://www.ideastream.org/news/increasing-tree-equity-one-cleveland-neighborhood-at-a-time

News: Cleveland Teachers Union Rejects Tentative Agreement with School District

News: Cleveland Teachers Union Rejects Tentative Agreement with School District

The Cleveland Teachers Union (CTU) has rejected the three year contract proposed by the Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD). Teachers voted 1,832 to 1,730 to reject the deal. Failure to approve the tentative agreement that was reached on Aug. 30, 2016 means the teachers and school district will continue negotiations to revise the contract.

books-1099067_1920“It was a close vote, but enough of our members clearly do not believe that the Tentative Agreement fixed the broken promises that occurred over the last three years,” David Quolke, CTU President, told Cleveland.com. “Our members know that there is still too much testing for our students and that evaluations must become significantly more fair.”

According to Cleveland.com, the deal, which would have given the teachers a 2 percent raise this school year, called for wages to be negotiated again next year when the result of the tax renewal is known. The 2012 tax increase that is up for renewal in November was a 15-mill tax that raised the city’s property tax rate for schools by about 50 percent. It gives the schools about $65 million a year, or nearly 10 percent of its $700 million operating budget.

The contract also would have eliminated a plan what was reached in 2013 as part of the Cleveland Plan for Transforming Schools that bases teacher raises on their annual performance review.

“While I respect the decision of CTU’s members, I do believe that the agreement reached between the District and Union bargaining teams was good for our student scholars, fair for our educators, and protected the reforms of The Cleveland Plan,” said Eric Gordon, CEO of CMSD, in an email. “The District remains committed to bargaining a contract that meets these goals and that members can support.  We will be prepared to meet with the CTU bargaining team in the days ahead and continue to work for an agreement that can be supported by all.”

To learn more about the agreement, visit Cleveland.com or the Cleveland Metropolitan School District website.