Things That Matter

The Homework Gap Is Something Many Ignore, But Prince Royce Is Working To Bring Awareness To This Issue

Prince Royce can’t remember the last time he read a newspaper or picked up a book. But it’s not because the bachata superstar lacks enthusiasm for reading — far from it. The Bronx native gets all his news and literature digitally.

Sunday night at the Conga Room in Los Angeles, “La carretera” singer proved just how much he values technology and the internet by performing an intimate concert for the 1Million Project, a multi-year initiative benefitting students who lack internet access at home.

Prince Royce teamed up with the Sprint Foundation last year to raise money and awareness for countless students in the United States who don’t have the educational resources that many of us take for granted.

Marcelo Claure/Facebook
CREDIT: Marcelo Claure/Facebook

“I don’t think we realize how many people don’t actually have cell phones or internet service,” Prince Royce told mitú. “In a world where schools have become so competitive, every kid needs the internet, and a lot of them don’t have it.”

The imbalance between students with Wi-Fi access and those without is called the “homework gap,” and it’s these kids who continue to fall behind. According to a Pew Research Center analysis, most American homes with school-age children do have broadband access – about 82.5 percent. However, this means that about 5 million households with school-age children do not have internet service. Pew shows that low-income households, especially Black and Latino homes, make up a disproportionate share of that 5 million.

Prince Royce told mitú that he feels fortunate to have been in the first graduating class of the Bronx Academy of Letters because, although it’s a public school, its small class sizes allowed him to have a more personal, intimate educational experience.

Prince Royce said that he didn’t realize that access to technology was such a problem for young people until last year, which is why he teamed up with his former employer to help close the “homework gap.”

"#TBT freshman year."
CREDIT: “#TBT freshman year.” -Prince Royce

“I realized not too long ago that when you don’t have a phone you can’t even look up a word in the dictionary or you can’t find your way to the local pharmacy,” Prince Royce said. “You can’t check anything. We depend on our phones, we depend on the internet.”

The 27-year-old singer playfully recalled what it was like for him to be a kid and not have the technology that most students have today.


“I remember having a calendar in my bedroom and having to write things down, and now we write everything down on our phones,” Prince Royce said. “I feel like school might be easier now. I used to punch numbers in a calculator and had to get textbooks and had to get help from friends. Now you send text messages or FaceTime with someone else in another country.”

During the event, the Bronx native reiterated that while most have an abundance of resources that are connected to Wi-Fi access, there are still so many students that don’t.

The Conga Room
CREDIT: The Conga Room

“There are other schools that are so big, and these kids can’t get that personal attention,” Prince Royce told mitú. “Some teachers don’t even know their names. I think it’s important to give these kids what they need in order for them to progress.”

Some of the beneficiaries from the 1Million Project attended last Sunday’s show and kicked off the festivities.

Jazz ensemble from Garey High School. Araceli Cruz
CREDIT: Jazz ensemble from Garey High School. Araceli Cruz

The jazz ensemble from Garey High School in Pomona were elated not only to perform at the Conga Room but also because they’d finally have Wi-Fi at school. ?

It’s easy to imagine a superstar thinking mostly of himself, reveling in his success. Luckily for the kids of Pomona Unified School District, and many others, Prince Royce isn’t like that.


READ: Listen To Jennifer Lopez, Prince Royce And Selena Gomez Pay Tribute To Victims Of Orlando Shooting

Share and let us know what it would be like for you to not have cell phones or Wi-Fi.

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This 12-Year-Old MENSA Member Is Starting His Sophomore Year of College But Stays Humble— ‘I Just Grasp Information Quickly’

Fierce

This 12-Year-Old MENSA Member Is Starting His Sophomore Year of College But Stays Humble— ‘I Just Grasp Information Quickly’

CBS

Twelve-year-old Caleb Anderson has a head on his shoulder that’s steering him towards a bright and brilliant future. Most kids Anderson’s age are diving headfirst into their 7th-grade year, he on the other hand is headed to college.

Back to college that is.

Anderson is currently enrolled at Chattahoochee Technical College as a sophomore.

From Marietta, Georgia, he’s on track to graduate with his bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering in two years. Speaking to CBS News for an interview the pre-treen remains humble and chalks up his success to being quick.

“I’m not really smart,” Caleb explained in his interview with the outlet. “I just grasp information quickly. So, if I learn quicker, then I get ahead faster.”

When it comes to pursuing his education, Anderson has his eyes set on a greater prize than just earning his bachelor’s degree. The 12-year-old is intent on heading off to Georgia Institute of Technology or the Massachusetts Institute for Technology. He’s hoping to eventually wind up with an internship at Tesla working for SpaceX founder Elon Musk.

“When I was like 1, I always wanted to go to space,” Anderson said in a separate interview with USA Today. “I figured that aerospace engineering would be the best path.”

Just twelve and Anderson has made quite a few other accomplishments.

At just 9 months old he learned how to do American Sign Language began reading just a few months later. “I have this distinct memory of going to a first-grade class and learning there, and everyone was way taller than me, because, you know, I was 2,” he explained to USA Today. “I could barely walk!”

According to his interviews, Anderson began solving math equations by the time he reached his second birthday and qualified for MENSA at just 3 years old. MENSA is the largest and oldest high IQ society across the globe. The non-profit organization is open to people who score at the 98th percentile or higher on a standardized intelligence test. Members have included the likes of Geena Davis, Nolan Gould of “Modern Family,” and Joyce Carol Oates.

Explaining what it is like to raise a genius, Anderson’s father Kobi WKYC that he realized his kid was special when he began to speak to other parents.

“As we started to interact with other parents, and had other children, then we started to realize how exceptional this experience was because we had no other frame of reference,” Kobi explained. “He has far surpassed me in math, so I can’t help him anymore. Seriously! He’s in calculus two now!”

When it comes to her son, Anderson’s mother says that she hopes other parents see him as an example and that he inspires other Black children.

“I think people have a negative perspective when it comes to African-American boys,” she explained. “There are many other Calebs out there… African-American boys like him. From being a teacher — I really believe that. But they don’t have the opportunity or the resources.”

Check out Anderson’s interview below!

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Kobe Bryant’s Wrongful Death Lawsuit Has Tragically Been Moved To Federal Court Despite Vanessa Bryant’s Pleas

Entertainment

Kobe Bryant’s Wrongful Death Lawsuit Has Tragically Been Moved To Federal Court Despite Vanessa Bryant’s Pleas

kobebryant / lacosheriff / Instagram

Updated October 7, 2020.

Soon after basketball player Kobe Bryant was killed in a Jan. 26 helicopter crash alongside his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others, reports surfaced from the Los Angeles Times that L.A. County sheriff’s deputies had captured and shared photos of the accident site. Abominably, these images included pictures of the victims. Worse, deputies allegedly continued to share the photos in the days following the horrific accident that transpired in Calabasas, California.

During a time when she should have been allowed to mourn, Bryant’s wife Vanessa Bryant worked to file a lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department alleging violation of privacy.

Bryant’s wrongful death lawsuit against the owner of Kobe Bryant’s doomed helicopter has been moved to federal court.

Bryant’s lawsuit claimed Island Express is liable for the deaths of her husband and daughter because the helicopter was only licensed to fly in visually navigable conditions.

According to paperwork obtained by the Daily News, Bryant filed her original wrongful death complaint against Island Express Helicopters this past February at Los Angeles County’s Superior Court. In response, the helicopter company filed a cross-complaint against two federal air traffic controllers, “triggering the venue change.”

Vanessa’s lawyers have argued that the removal was made as part of a “transparent and untenable attempt to forum-shop their way into federal court.”

“Defendants unlawfully and improperly seek to deprive Mrs. Bryant of her lawful choice of forum in California state court,” the lawyers argued in a September filing.

In response to Bryant’s lawsuit, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill in September to prohibit first responders from taking photographs of deceased victims ″outside of job duties.”

AB 2655 was signed by Newsom on Monday and prohibits first responders from taking photographs, not related to job duties, of deceased victims. According to KCBS, Violation of the law will result in a misdemeanor.

AB 2655 states that “Existing law generally prohibits a reproduction of any kind of photograph of the body, or any portion of the body, of a deceased person, taken by or for the coroner at the scene of death or in the course of a post mortem examination or autopsy, from being made or disseminated. Existing law generally makes a person who views, by means of any instrumentality, including, but not limited to, a camera or mobile phone, the interior of any area in which the occupant has a reasonable expectation of privacy, with the intent to invade the privacy of a person or persons inside, guilty of a misdemeanor. This bill would make it a misdemeanor for a first responder, as defined, who responds to the scene of an accident or crime to capture the photographic image of a deceased person for any purpose other than an official law enforcement purpose or a genuine public interest. By creating a new crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program. The bill would require an agency that employs first responders to, on January 1, 2021, notify those first responders of the prohibition imposed by the bill. By increasing the duties of local agencies, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.”

The images of the crash site victims occurred despite a personal request from Vanessa Bryant to Sheriff Alex Villanueva on the morning of the crash to request the site be secured for privacy.

This was a legal claim filed against the department in May.

″In reality, however, no fewer than eight sheriff’s deputies were at the scene snapping cell-phone photos of the dead children, parents, and coaches,″ the document filed by Vanessa explained ″As the Department would later admit, there was no investigative purpose for deputies to take pictures at the crash site. Rather, the deputies took photos for their own personal purposes.”

Vanessa Bryant filed a lawsuit against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

On Jan. 26, a helicopter carrying Kobe and Gianna Bryant, Payton and Sarah Chester, Alyssa, Keri, and John Altobelli, Christina Mauser, and pilot Ara Zobayan crashed in the Calabasas hills. The sudden death devastated those who knew Kobe and the city of Los Angeles that mourned his death for months after.

Vanessa was shocked to hear that the sheriff deputies took photos of her husband’s and daughter’s bodies at the crash site.

“This lawsuit is about accountability and about preventing this disgraceful behavior from happening to other families in the future who have suffered loss,” Vanessa’s attorney, Luis Li, said in a statement. “The department formally refused Mrs. Bryant’s requests for information, saying it was ‘unable to assist’ with any inquiry and had no legal obligation to do so. It’s now for a court to tell the department what its obligations are.”

Bryant sued the department claiming damages for emotional distress, negligence, and invasion of privacy.

Kobe fans are upset with the LACSD and the allegations that the deputies took these photos.

According to TMZ, Sheriff Alex Villanueva knew about the photos taken by eight deputies and shared within the department. They were also shared in the Lost Hills Sheriff’s substation. Sheriff Villanueva told the deputies to delete the photos from their phones and felt confident they did so.

A trainee allegedly shared the photos with a woman in a bar.

A witness to the event said that a trainee took out his phone and showed a woman the photos to impress her. The bartender overheard the conversation and filed an online complaint about the trainee and their behavior with the photos. The trainee showed the woman the photos a few days after the crash leading many to believe that the sheriff’s department was fully aware of the photos.

Kobe fans are standing behind Vanessa as she follows through with her lawsuit.

Reports state that the sheriff’s department told deputies to delete the images to avoid disciplinary action. The coverup is sparking outrage by Kobe fans who are angered that the department did not do enough to protect the dignity and privacy of all of the victims of the crash.

Mitú will update this story as it continues to develop.

READ: Vanessa Bryant Forced To Respond To ‘Beyond Hurtful’ Comments Made By Her Own Mom On ‘El Gordo y La Flaca’

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