HARTFORD — Champions of immigrant and refugee’s rights will gather at Asylum Hill Congregation Church this June to hear a keynote address from Mandy Manning, the 2018 National Teacher of the Year.
Manning will deliver the keynote at a forum focusing on the problems and triumphs of immigrant and refugee students. Manning has spent the year advocating for refugee and immigrant teens.
The event will be held on June 9 at 11:45 a.m. in the church 814 Asylum Ave.
The Council of Chief State School Officers praised Manning for her exceptional work in helping children to “overcome their fears and seek out new experiences.”
In her classroom, Manning emphasizes connections between her students and the community helping them to process trauma, celebrate their home countries and culture, and learn about their new community. When she was interviewed on CBS This Morning last year, Manning said she loves teenagers because “there’s so much possibility all the time.”
Two leaders in working with immigrants and refugees in Connecticut will respond to Mandy’s remarks: Chris George, executive director of Integrated Refugee and Immigrant Services, a New Haven nonprofit that helps to resettle refugees throughout the state; and Homa Naficy, executive director of The American Place at the Hartford Public Library, which provides a range of services, including ESL classes and citizenship preparation, to immigrants and refugees.
George, like Manning, began his career as a Peace Corps volunteer. Manning served in Armenia and George in Oman. Naficy, on the other hand, was born in Paris to Iranian parents and was named Connecticut Immigrant of the Year in 2001.