PSMM Bloggers Attend John Legend Education Event

On July 20th, a group of PSMM bloggers made their way to New York City via P&G Give and Bloganthropy to hear award winning singer and spokesperson, John Legend, give voice and passion to education and drop-out prevention.

Every nine seconds, another student will drop out of school. And 2,000 schools are responsible for 50% of the nation’s dropouts.

Picture: 1st Row: Sarah Peppel, Julie Pron, Kelly Whalen, Debbie Bookstaber; 2nd row: Jim Leish from P&G Give, Grammy Award winning recording artist John Legend, Dan Cardinali from Communities in Schools.

Prior to the blogger roundtable, Legend sang his song, “Shine”, with the Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation choir from M.S. 390 in University Heights, Bronx. Dan Cardinali from Communities in Schools shared his vision for helping build communities to keep kids in schools.

Quotes from the blogger roundtable:

Dan Cardinali, Communities in Schools: “We are breaking out elementary, middle and high school programs and focusing on kids reading by 3rd grade.  . . . We build a community of support around kids and families. . . . We want to turn off the pipeline of drop-outs. . . .Relationships transform kids’ lives not programs.”

John Legend: “There were people in my school that cared about whether I showed up . . . a guidance counselor, a music teacher, a gym teacher. That’s what’s needed in school. . . . Having things like talent shows made me confident about being a speaker. They helped me connect. . . . When you take away those programs, you take away the will of kids to succeed. We have to invest in the future. . . . Teacher quality is the most important thing in education excellence.”

Jim Leish, P&G Give: “A lot of it [what we are doing] is to use our marketing muscle to drive awareness. There ARE solutions. . . . When kids can see kids like themselves succeed and we can be the medium, that’s success.”

Last question: “How do you help kids with special needs?”

Dan: “We focus on diagnosis to make sure kids are in the right program for what they need. Our high schools are our number one referral system for the juvenile delinquency system. Once in, it’s hard to get out. If we can identify what’s causing kids to act out and stop it young, we have a better chance of keeping them out of trouble and in school.”

P&G is starting a new campaign with their July 31st brandSAVER flyer. When you use their GIVE Education coupons, 2 cents of every coupon will go back to Communities in Schools who works hard to fight drop-out in schools! You save, they win!

Read more blogger input on this event at

Written by Sarah Peppel of Genesis Moments

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Jo-Lynne Shane is co-founder of Philly Social Media Moms and author of her personal fashion and lifestyle blog, Jo-Lynne Shane: My Life & Style, where she shares wearable style and beauty tips for the suburban housewife. Jo-Lynne lives in the western suburbs of Philadelphia with her family.

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