As we celebrate Black History Month, East Harlem Tutorial Program is recognizing staff who dedicate themselves to our Scholars. Today we’re giving a shout-out to Manager Derrick Spencer, who works with middle schoolers in our after-and summer-school program.
Derrick, who is committed to providing access to opportunities for Black and Latinx people, graduated from Howard University, where he studied English and Secondary Education. He began his teaching career as a public-school teacher in Washington, D.C, creating multiple programs designed to help students explore their cultural identities and participate in various levels of advocacy. After his 6th graders expressed their interest in civic engagement, Derrick developed an academic unit on social activism that led to hundreds of students urging Congress to act on issues such as mass incarceration, human trafficking, and wage disparities. He also engaged parents and others during the school’s first of many community-based events that explored race and equity in education.
After moving to New York City, Derrick taught 7th-grade ELA in Brownsville, Brooklyn, and worked as a program consultant for NYC’s Department of Education. He is now pursuing his master’s in public administration from New York University, and has great things in store for his EHTP Scholars: Derrick (shown here during an EHTP apple-picking field trip), is organizing a culturally-responsive book club where students can talk about the realities of racism. Thank you, Derrick, for adding so much to our community! #HistoryInTheMaking