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LBUSD Announces Center of Black Student Excellence

Long Beach Unified School District Center of Black Student Excellence

The Long Beach Unified School District is excited to announce the upcoming launch of the Center of Black Student Excellence, a pioneering initiative designed to enhance educational opportunities and foster community engagement. With plans to open in late 2024, the Center will be a hub of expertise, partnerships and cultural assets geared towards lifting the educational experience of Black students.

Norma Spencer has been selected to lead this transformative effort as the Center of Black Student Excellence Director. In alignment with the district’s Excellence and Equity policy, Spencer will guide the center's development and strategic direction, ensuring it becomes a cornerstone of educational excellence and empowerment for Long Beach Unified students.

Superintendent Dr. Jill A. Baker shared her enthusiasm, stating, “The Center of Black Student Excellence is a significant step forward in our commitment to equity and excellence. We are thrilled to have Norma Spencer at the helm. Her expertise and passion for educational excellence and equity are perfectly suited to bring our vision for this center to life.”

Deputy Superintendent Dr. Tiffany Brown also expressed strong support, noting, “Spencer’s leadership will be crucial as we approach the center’s opening. Her commitment to creating an inclusive educational environment perfectly aligns with our district’s goals and the broader needs of our community.”

Spencer brings a wealth of experience and a proven track record of transformative educational leadership. Her prior roles have seen her successfully analyze crucial data to address inequities in school practices, develop professional development programs focused on diversity, inclusion and equity, and significantly improve student academic achievement in numeracy and literacy across multiple schools. Under her leadership, schools have seen a 29% increase in math proficiency and a 34% increase in literacy proficiency, underscoring her impact on student success.

LBUSD remains committed to ensuring that every student has the opportunity to succeed. The establishment of the Center under Spencer’s leadership underscores the district’s dedication to providing all students with enriching and transformative educational experiences.

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