Former National Black Teacher of the Year Leon Rouson (Norfolk State University) was in the fourth grade in 1969 when schools in his county were fully integrated, and for the first time he would have a white teacher. Mrs. Bearinger was a woman nearing retirement who had never taught African American children before. But she and Leon developed a special bond that year, and he says despite her age, Mrs. Bearinger was ahead of her time.
Also featured: Until recently, most researchers believed the brain stopped developing cognitive ability after a certain age. But a new study by Oliver Hill (Virginia State University) suggests otherwise. Hill is wrapping up a study of inner city teenagers who have received a long course of what he calls “mental calisthenics.” The before and after brain images show remarkable growth in the area attributed to cognitive thinking.