Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Miami: Nation’s 4th Largest School District Dumps Most Year End Tests

Blog by +Wanda Dorn    #wandascafe

The Black Home School.com

Miami: Nation’s 4th Largest School District 

Dumps Most Year End Tests

It's about time our politicians and leaders looked at this issue with a new lens.

Kudos to Governor Rick Scott for his vision.  

These tests that are so punitive to teachers and administrators do not test the success of a teacher.  

Building more schools so that teachers have fewer students in their classroom is a more effective tool for successful students.  Most schools often have somewhere near forty students to a class, when they should probably have under twenty.  This will allow teachers to give more attention to a student that is at risk of failing. 

Tests do not always show what a student knows, because, as we all know, some people don't test well.  The teacher in the classroom is the best judge of when a student is at risk.

Some say teachers are out during the summer and holidays, so they have it easy.  What parent have it easy raising their own children that they know, let alone a teacher in the classroom who has to get a quick assessment of each of the (forty) students (each class) thrust at them twice a year.  Let alone the time they have to spend disciplining or asking for assistance in disciplining students.  Some students can be a disciplinary challenge.

Teachers are required to have certain degrees and credentialing, but make less money than almost anyone in other fields requiring the same degrees and amount of education.

When are we going to respect our educators again?  That's the key to better schools; that and smaller class sizes.

What young person would want to go into the field of education today as a career?  Any wonder we have a shortage of teachers?

This article and Governor Scott's concerns gives me hope!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015


Blog based on Wanda's Diversity Protocol and Etiquette Seminars
Motto:  "The World was my oyster but I used the wrong fork"   
Blog by +Wanda Dorn      #wandascafe

Wanda Dorn
Chief Facilitator


...Taken from the theme for Wanda's above seminar is:



A blog inspired today by this Facebook posting shared by Shabaka Heru
Photo by Marina Stant'Anna
A comment under the photo read, "What a beautiful Black woman"

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

I Was Honored to have been a Guest Speaker at the Armenian Genocide Commemoration

Blog by +Wanda Dorn        #wandascafe

Wanda Dorn, Guest Speaker
Armenian Genocide Commemoration

The Armenian Genocide Commemoration

It was an honor to have been a "guest Speaker" at the April 24th, Armenian Genocide Commemoration several years ago.

I was also selected to be one of twenty-one community leaders appointed by the Mayor and City Council, to advise on instituting the April 24th, Genocide Commemoration Day, which was immediately adopted by the City.  It was exciting and educationally inclusive to learn more about the issues and concerns surrounding the Armenian community's request for a commemoration day.

I'm wishing everyone a wonderful April 24th Commemoration again this year.

Asbarez Armenian News

LA City Hall lit in purple lights in Commemoration of the #Armenian Genocide.  

Thank you Glendale Councilmember Paul Krekorian.  

from the Post by Catherine Yesayan,  City of Glendale activist

Saturday, April 18, 2015


Blog based on Wanda's Social & Business Protocol and Etiquette Seminars
Motto; "The World was my oyster but I used the wrong fork"... exclaimed Oscar Wilde 
Blog by +Wanda Dorn    #wandascafe
Wanda Dorn
Chief Facilitator
Diversity Etiquette




 Enculturation/Acculturation Diversity Etiquette Seminar Class Welcome

This is my favorite welcome sign posted as clients enter the seminar room, and the cover of the course materials for foreign clients and those who want to learn more about American social, business and entertaining culture.

Thursday, April 16, 2015


Blog based on Wanda's Social & Business Protocol and Etiquette Seminars
Motto:  "The World was my oyster but I used the wrong fork"   
Wand Dorn
Chief Facilitator

"The Only Minority In The Workplace, Group or Organization"

... An excerpt from Wanda's Enculturation and Acculturation Diversity Seminars (one of ten)

In my "Codes of Behavior Enculturation and Acculturation" seminars, I teach Immigrants and Americans, effective ways to "act" instead of "react" in situations where they might become the victim of the circumstances around them; circumstances that can get one fired from a job or alienated from a group or organization they love even though they did not create the situation.  Often our "reaction(s)" put us in jeopardy.

In case you're thinking the "majority" I speak of is White Americans ... well, you are wrong!  A minority is any person who is different in a group.  We've all been the only minority at one time or another, whether it's weight, height, sexual orientation, race, gender, handicapped, etc.

I find Category-Awareness is a must-train for my minority groups because they most certainly will always be placed or forced into one of four personality profile categories, unlike the majority group who can simply be themselves among the group.

I have trained Corporate Executives and Management, no matter their ethnicity, how important it is to be cognizant of category placement to avoid staff interaction or inter-reaction that can create an uncomfortable work environment; and organization leaders can maintain healthy group relations.

Having been the first Black in several career and social paths, when I appeared as a guest on the Bill Cosby show You Bet Your Life, during my audition they were impressed with my list of firsts.  Needless to say I have experienced category placement.   Not being aware of what was happening, I found myself reacting instead of acting - identifying and addressing category dynamics early on.  After I learned to identify category placement, I created a  #DiversityEtiquette workshop to train my clients.

With this quick overview try to identify what category you have been placed in, or whether you have category-placed someone else. 


Remember if you are the minority you will be placed in one of these categories

Which category will you accept?

Have you experienced any of my identified categories?

Have you experienced any other category other than the ones I've listed?

Do you believe that we should put people in categories at all?


  • Uncle Tom

    The Caretaker of the majority group, understanding, supportive, great listener, the token, always available to represent the minority group.  

  • Sex Object

    Someone to be flirted with, fought over.  The majority wonders about their sexual prowess, the seductress, the athlete, the stud, the physically attractive ... 
    whether real or imagined ... not work or group-goals related.

  • Buffoon

    The office or group's lively entertainer, the cheerleader, lots of fun, the jokester, making the majority feel good as they go into the playing field while the buffoon cheers from the sidelines but never seems to get to play on that level playing field.

  • Militant

    Often considered a radical, tough, dangerous, needs to be watched, needs to be kept at a distance, too aggressive, someone to be afraid of ... but this person is the come-to person when they need help with the newest incoming minority person, or issues pertaining to that particular minority group. 

  #wandascafe       #EtiquetteProtocol      #YouthEtiquette      #DiversityEtiquette

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


Blog by  +Wanda Dorn                                #wandascafe

I implore Eric Holder, The Department of Justice and the ACLU to explore explore the possible discriminatory elements of the Atlanta Teachers' case:  I.e., the first teachers chosen to be charged on RICO “Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization” "test-run" charges are minorities.  Everyone knows that's pause for cause. I believe had they jailed 33 White teachers under a new case-law experiment, this country would be up in arms.

Wanda Dorn   (official photo)
as School Board Candidate
As a former School Board Candidate, private school owner and teacher, my political campaign addressed teachers "Teaching to the Test", never would I have imagined that this country would jail teachers under RICO laws ... Equating them to “organized criminals”.  Quoting an article:  “A report shows student testing irregularities in D.C. under the leadership of Michelle Rhee star education reform advocate“... Why didn’t they consider charging her?  Why no charges in the Allen Texas cheating and nepotism scandal, the El Paso Texas cheating scandal, just to name a few who allegedly did the same thing? It has been reported that cheating of this same pattern has been found in over 40 states, yet no charges have been levied.
An article I read said "this is what happens when you 'dumb down' Black kids”.  Let me just dispel that ideology right now.  I know from personal observation and reading reports spanning from Texas to California, that White teachers teaching privileged White kids have been found doing the same thing.  If the article was written by a Black person, then he or she has been “dumbed down" by arrogance.  If it was written by a White person, then, they have been “dumbed down" by their attempt to be superior to others.
In the article there is reference to Asian kids being smart.  Remember, stereotypes go into the school system as well ... that’s racial profiling ... I often have to address this topic in my panel discussions, speeches and/or diversity trainings.  Last time I checked, there are more Black women with college degrees per capita than White males – chew on that!
Wanda (in white) campaign for School
Board and an award recipient and was 

endorsed as a candidate by her city's 
leading newspaper

Now let’s get to why politicians must take much of the responsibility for the failure of our school system, which is near the bottom of the food chain among developed countries. 
In early years, it was the teacher who was the most respected person in the community along with the doctors and ministers, especially true in the Black community.  Even out west, it was the school marm who was the most respected person in town.

In high school, I had a Russian teacher who told us students, that in her country, students could not enter the classroom until the teacher had entered, and the students could not exit until after the teacher had exited, and that teachers were the highest paid and most respected people in the country because "It takes a teacher to become a doctor, lawyer ... or even a politician".

Politicians must take Responsibility
It was not until politicians in the early 90’s found education an easy target to hang their election hats on, therefore, the people who care for our children became the country's culprits.  Politicians found every education angle to campaign on.  When quotas were no longer an effective platform, they found charter schools, teacher credentials, and other campaign rhetoric to benefit their agendas. 

The majority of politicians and persons who are administering school mandates have never been teachers nor school administrators.  If you’ve never been a doctor, how can you tell the hospital how doctors should carry out their work?
Then came the “before” Obama Administration, who came up with forced teaching-to-the-test in their “No Child Left Behind” fiascos, which lead to where we are today ... jailing teachers.  There became a time when teachers had to just forget teaching-to-their-curriculum and follow the dictates of their school administrators so as not to loose their jobs.  Administrators had to become oppressive and punitive to their teaching staff so the State wouldn’t take away their school and "close the school  down".  With all this, we are still at the bottom of the education food chain.
We must remember why public schools were started:  to guarantee every child the right to go to school.  Before public schools, only the privileged attended school while the underprivileged worked.  

After the system was in place, "classism" found a way to segregate, rendering the underprivileged to a form of under-education and miseducation, but that was better than no education at all, because the Black Teachers cared about their Black students.  Even today, the traditionally Black college professors care about their students.  Many Black college graduates say they would like to have spent at least one semester at a Black college.
Charter schools, and now teaching-to-the-test that the politicians put into place are national and taxpayer dollars failures.  I ask any one who sends their child to charter schools:

  • How many teachers have credentials.  Only the head administrator is required to be.
  • How many millions has the “owner” of the school personally made since their school opened. 
  • How many public school administrators have to approve of and oversee their curriculum.  Charter schools are required to get the approval and curriculum from the local public school.  While that school administrator(s) is working with the charter school, how much of our tax dollars are being spent.  If these administrators can oversee the charter school and it’s curriculum, why can’t that administrator instead be working with and/or creating a “magnet” or charter school environment within the public schools.  Why should we tax-fund charter schools in any way shape or form.
  • How much money do public schools loose when our tax dollar-funded charter school takes a student from the public school.  The public school is funded based on the number of students attending ... the public school loose money.
  • How many students have your charter school turned away and not allowed them to enter because they chose to.  How many students have been “put out of their school” because (as it has been reported) “they just don’t like the student”, or “the student is not achieving” ... the public schools are not allowed to make arbitrary decisions as to why a student can’t attend its schools.  Teachers are not allowed to put a student out of class for more than three days for disciplinary problems.
  • How is it that the charter schools are much more ethnically segregated than public schools?  Why -  Because the privileged have found yet another way to keep privileged kids in separate (not equal) schools. 
Politicians and all Americans - Respect our teachers! Stay out of the classroom and allow teachers and administrators to do their jobs so they can return to teaching-to-the-curriculum and not to the test.  These testing requirements should be abolished or amended.

Politicians - do what you do best - look into the matter and help teachers bring our schools from the bottom of the food chain to the top ... you can do it!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


Blog By Wanda Dorn                    #WandaDorn

Barbara Higgins Bond

Barbara Higgins Bond, a versatile artist whose work has attracted national attention, Higgins Bond (as she’s known professionally) has been an illustrator and commercial artist for close to 40 years, and I take "bragging rights" ... Barbara is my maternal first cousin!  What an honor - I can't help but place her in celebration of this year's Women's History Month. Barbara, I think I remember right ... you said you combined your maiden and married name because early on when you were an up and coming illustrator, as in most high-level technical fields back then, being female was sometimes career-challenging, but if the name appeared male, it seemed to open doors.  I don't know if things have changed all that much.

Paraphrasing her biographical history: 
Barbara's images have appeared in children’s books and on magazine and book covers, posters, album covers, and collectors’ plated created for such prominent clients as Anheuser-Busch, McGraw-Hill, Essence magazine, the Franklin Mint, The Bradford Exchange, NBC, Hennessy Cognac, Frito-Lay, and Columbia House.  She also is an adjunct professor of illustration at the Nossi College of Art in Nashville.  The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Du Sable Museum of African-American History have exhibited her work.  She has received prestigious honors including a medal of honor from then-Governor Bill Clinton.  The first African-American female to illustrate a United States postage stamp, she has created outstanding designs for three Black Heritage issues: Jan E. Matzeliger, W.E.B. Du Bois, and Percy Lavon Julian.  She also has illustrated four stamps for the United Nations Postal Administration.

"Great Kings of Africa" by Higgins Bond

The "Great Kings of Africa" is one of my favorite of her illustrations - but she has created such a litany of great works, it is r-e-a-l-l-y hard to choose.



Blog by   +Wanda Dorn        #wandascafe       #DiversityEtiquette
Wanda Dorn
was the first Black Flight Attendant for the airline I worked for ... So it is with great honor, I join in the observance of the 40th anniversary of the creation of the "Black Flight Attendants of America (BFAA)".  The organization recently honored the first Black Flight Attendant, LĂ©opoldine Doualla-Bell Smith ... God Bless my comrade!  

We had diversity challenges that only made us stronger.   We were called Stewardesses then, not Flight Attendants.  That title came later as men  became Attendants. 

I'd like to mention another pioneering comrade, and a "running buddy" friend of mine at the time, who became the first Black Flight Attendant  for another airline, Carole DiPasalene.  She was also hired by Mrs. Johnson, owner of Ebony Magazine, as their first commentator host for the famed Ebony Fashion Fair.

Carole DiPasalene on cover
of Jet after becoming first
Commentator Host for

Ebony Fashion Fair 
Wanda at home after her airline's 
Stewardess Training Graduation Day...
Now Wanda can spread her wings and fly