Zendaya and Google Work Together to Support Computer Science Curriculum For Oakland Kids
Google has joined forces with actress Zendaya to help Roses in Concrete Community School students in East Oakland, California.
The school originally received $750,000 from Google.org, but an additional $650,000 was given as an investment to finance a new computer science course. The community school was opened by Dr. Jeff Duncan-Andrade in 2015 with the mission “the purpose of education is not to escape poverty, but to end it.”
“Roses is a very special school. They are reinventing how we teach our young people, especially in underserved communities, by creating new and exciting ways for kids to learn information through arts programs and STEM, while also allowing them to learn and embrace their own culture and identities,” the former Disney Star told Essence Magazine.
One of the Principals at Google.org, Justin Stelle, chimed in to praise Zendaya on her charitable acts for the children of Oakland and “hope more kids will follow Zendaya’s example.”
The 21-year-old actress said she was privileged growing up and afforded the luxury of going to a “private school that provided computer science activities/courses.” Stelle added that “Black students are less likely than white students” to have computer classes at schools they attend compared to their white counterparts.
“Google.org has invested over $40M in grants focused on providing opportunities for underrepresented students to use computer science as a gateway to experimentation and deeper learning. We are excited to continue supporting innovative partners like Roses in Concrete Community School who are working hard to make computer science culturally relevant and community responsive,” the Google Principal told Essence.
Zendaya conveyed that children are the future and the future leaders of the world. She was particularly moved by Dr. Duncan-Andrade words during the event. “He said ‘The purpose of education isn’t to escape poverty…it’s to end it’ and I think that really speaks for what we all believe the power of education can do.”
Mini-documentary on Rose in Concrete: