Snapshot of CUBE's 50th

This past weekend NSBA’s Council of Urban Boards of Education (CUBE) held its 50th Annual Conference in New Orleans, Louisiana.

On opening day of the conference, CUBE members got a first-hand look at St. Charles Parish Public Schools, a triple A school system focused on academics, athletics, and the arts. Highlights of the visit, included a tour of the Satellite Center which offers ten career pathways for juniors and seniors; a visit to R. K. Smith Middle School where CPR – Circle of Power and Respect –  is a part of Developmental Design, a social/emotional curriculum, that is offered in all of the district’s middle and elementary schools; and a look at the former commercial space transformed into the Professional Learning Center, complete with professional development  classrooms, a technology lab, and a technology installation center.

Clint Smith, acclaimed spoken word poet and award-winning educator, provided inspiration during his keynote, reminding the 400+ school board members and education leaders in the audience of the power of education and its role in helping students push back and guard against the things that are affecting their lives.

Three school districts earned the 2017 CUBE District Award for their innovation and excellence in school board governance, academic improvement, educational equity and community engagement: Pennsylvania’s Pittsburgh Public Schools, Tennessee’s Shelby County Schools, and Texas’ Lancaster Independent School District.

Vince Ford, former school board member for South Carolina’s Richland County School District One, and Steve Gallon, a board member for Miami-Dade County Public Schools, were each awarded the 2017 Benjamin Elijah Mays Lifetime Achievement Award for advancing urban education.

Former U.S. Department of Education and President and CEO of Ed Trust, John B. King, addressed the audience on closing day, praising educators and school leaders for making schools an amazing, compelling place for children.  It’s up to all of us, said King, every day, to make sure that all kids feel valued and that they belong in our schools.  

Visit our conference photo album on NSBA’s Facebook page at  and read our news releases to learn more about CUBE’s district and lifetime award winners.

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