YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown’s chapter of the NAACP met with new school CEO Krish Mohip Thursday evening to talk about problems the group feels have been plaguing the district.
Things are already getting serious for Mohip on just his second day as CEO, discussing civil rights issues that impact the law and things the NAACP thinks need to be corrected.
“Mr. Mohip represents that drastic change because Mr. Mohip has what no other person has had in Youngstown City Schools. He has absolute power,” said Youngstown NAACP President George Freeman. “We have high hopes in Mr. Mohip because he is saying what we have been saying for the last couple of years.”
Mohip says he was made aware of the turmoil facing the district, specifically with East High School, which is why he wanted to sit down with the NAACP.
“At the end of the day, we’re going to see what this child needs, and whatever that child needs is what we need to find a way to provide so that child can be successful,” he said.
Mohip spoke passionately about Youngstown students.
“We are going to work diligently to fix some of these oversights, some of these challenges…to make sure we are providing a free and appropriate education for all of our students.”
In the past, NAACP leaders have been very vocal about the changes they want to see. Parents and school board members also spoke their minds at Thursday’s meeting.
“How do you support the teachers when you got a board that doesn’t support the teachers?” Wanda Coleman questioned.
School board member Jackie Adair said she thinks the problems are academic.
Another parent wants to see this generation of children do better than his own.
“I think everyone here has a heart and we want to save our kids from prison, an early grave, and want our children to dare to dream,” said Joseph Napier, Sr.
Leaders want to make sure Mohip will push for these changes.
“You, as an educator and a parent, know that these kids need to know that they’ll have books and they’re going to have people waiting on them at the buildings who are qualified, effective teachers,” said Youngstown NAACP Chairperson Jimma McWilson.
Mohip agreed that the district needs high-quality instruction.
“We have to make sure we protect the core, the teachers, and that happens first.”
He says he wants to build a strong relationship with students and parents, and he reiterated the NAACP’s message of education starting at home.
NAACP leaders say they’re hopeful that Mohip will move the district past what they call the bare minimum, and instead make a lasting impact on Youngstown’s students.