The free education curriculum reaches 840 students in New York, ages 8 to 10 years old, which is significant growth from the 30 Jackson began with. Jackson, who resides in Harlem, said she endured a lot of kickback from people who didn’t believe in her focus.
“The biggest difficulty (I encountered) was people under estimating the children,” Jackson said. “People would say ‘Well, shouldn’t these children be studying math and science? and I would tell people, ‘Absolutely they should be studying those subjects, but it’s not mutually exclusive.’”
Now Jackson says she’s thrilled and filled with pride that the kids people once had no faith in, are now learning the languages quickly and excelling.
“Now we’re in our fourth year and seeing how these kids who have grasped Mandarin and how they grasp Arabic, who were once under performing are now the stars of the classroom.”