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Saint Paul Public Schools, District 625
360 Colborne Street
Saint Paul


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National African American Parent Involvement Day

NAAPID 2024 was on  Monday, February 12, 2024. Check out the slideshow below from the NAAPID Resource Fair at Benjamin E. Mays and Black History Month at SPPS.

NAAPID Resource Fair & Black History Month 2024


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"I want to send a HUGE THANK YOU and Shout Out to everyone in the district who planned and supported NAAPID and Black History Month!  I want you to know that your efforts did not go unnoticed and most of all, our African American families felt the love. Many families brandished wonderful smiles as they told me stories about their experiences while visiting their children's schools. I am still wearing NAAPID and Black Wall Street T-Shirts and sharing pictures and videos created by school staff members. Most of all thank you for making our African American students and families feel more welcome, valuable and visible in our schools!  You are the best!"  - Brenda Burnside, SPPS African American Cultural Specialist

National African American Parent Involvement Day (NAAPID) is a day for all parents to come to their child's school, see what their day is like and to support their child's educational future. Some of the goals of NAAPID are to:

  • Promote parent involvement in their child's education.
  • Address the serious achievement gap facing African American students.
  • Promote and provide strategies for all parents and students to take full advantage of the educational process at all levels of the educational system (preschool through college).

Each SPPS school determines their participation in NAAPID. Contact your school to see if they are hosting events. 

The day will end with a districtwide celebration and resource fair at Benjamin E. Mays Elementary in the evening beginning at 5:30 p.m. 

Special Lunch Menu

SPPS is excited to partner with the Parents of African American Students Advisory Council (PAASAC) to create the special lunch menu that will be featured at all schools on Feb. 12. According to PAASAC leader Brenda Burnside, the inspiration behind this meal was to highlight the creativity and ingenuity that African Americans had with the foods that were accessible to them within an unjust food system. The chicken wings were seen as the wasted parts of the chicken. Through stewing or frying as well as the addition of many inventive spice blends and sauces, the wings of the chicken could be used with as little waste as possible. 

There is a significant story behind the Buffalo wing, including a contested history that shadows John Young's credit and innovation. This debate has been largely attributed to the heavily segregated lines in Buffalo, NY; with white and Black Buffalonians giving credit to Frank and Teressa Bellissimo (Anchor Bar) compared to John Young, respectively. Not only was there this debate that challenged John Young's contribution to the Buffalo wing, but John Young himself moved away from Buffalo after riots and racial tensions made him feel Buffalo was no longer safe. When he returned a decade later, he found a wing-crazy town that had given all the credit to the white restaurant owners.  

In full context, neither John nor the Anchor Bar owners represent the whole history behind fried wings. According to food historian Adrian Miller, author of "Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time," African Americans in southern states have been serving whole fried chicken to their families for many generations. On Sunday, families often served fried chicken dinners. Visiting preachers often took the choicest bits of chicken, giving to the term "preacher parts," Miller says. Children, last in line, often got wings. As one author said, the food you eat in childhood has a powerful pull. Let's remember John Young was one of 14 children, raised on an Alabama farm before he moved to Buffalo. By the 1950s, amid the Great Migration, wings were showing up as stand-alone dishes at Black-owned restaurants in the North. Unfortunately, no matter how popular, foods cooked at Black-owned restaurants were rarely given credit unless it was barbecue. This begs one to question who gets credit in America, and who doesn't (?)."


Soul Food: The Surprising Story of an American Cuisine, One Plate at a Time by Adrian Miller 

Additional Resources16 Trailblazing Black Minnesotans You Should Know More About
Black Minnesotans made headlines across the nation even before the state was admitted to the Union in 1858, and any number of black explorers, advocates, teachers and preachers played crucial roles in launching many of the state’s earliest institutions.

How African Americans Have Shaped the State of Minnesota
African Americans have lived in Minnesota since the 1800s. The local African American population developed from individuals who were born in the state as well as those who migrated to Minnesota from other states in search of a better life.

Black National Anthem Lyrics

History of African Americans in Minnesota by SPPS

Questions? Contact Brenda Burnside for more information.