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Signal T R I B U N E Serving BixBy KnollS, California HeigHtS, loS CerritoS, Wrigley and tHe City of Signal Hill Your Weekly Community Newspaper April 27, 2012 Dalai Lama returns to Long Beach to The solution may be found in the problem discuss ‘Peace of Mind in Troubled Times’ To address issues of racial tension, low morale and violence, Jordan High School conducts its first-ever student-led youth summit Vol. 33 No. 47 Cory Bilicko Managing Editor Photo by Diana Lejins The Dalai Lama during his press event in Long Beach on April 20 International peace icon Tenzin Gyatso, the Fourteenth Dalai Lama, returned to Long Beach to deliver a public address at the Long Beach Arena on April 21. Titled “Peace of Mind in Troubled Times,” the speech covered how to cultivate generosity, humility, and equanimity– universal themes that have made him one of the world’s most beloved spiritual teachers. An advocate of social justice and nonviolence, the Dalai Lama continues to travel widely to promote a more open, just, and democratic world. The Tibetan leader officially devolved his political leadership last year but remains the head of Tibetan Buddhism. In a press preview talk the day prior, he touched on his main goals in life, of promoting human compassion and tolerance, encouraging religious harmony and understanding, and addressing the Tibetan struggle for justice. When asked about the recent self-immolations of Tibetan monks, he commented that it was a very political issue but said it was very sad and that people need to investigate for themselves why it is happening. Although the Dalai Lama was in the Southland last May, travel delays caused the cancellation of several engagements, including a public talk at the Long Beach Terrace Theatre. Local organizers were able to reschedule the event, this time at the larger, neighboring Long Beach Arena. The event was sponsored by Gaden Shartse Thubten Dhargye Ling, a local center for the study of Buddhism and Tibetan Culture, which is located at 3500 E. 4th St., in Long Beach. “It is with extraordinary pleasure that we welcome His Holiness back to Long Beach on one of his rare visits,” said Dan Spellens, director of Theaters & Entertainment for the Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center. “We thank Gaden Shartse Thubten Dhargye Ling for working with us on this one-of-a-kind event.” Sources: Long Beach Convention & Entertainment Center, Diana Lejins It’s likely that, when one thinks of after-school programs, visions of art projects created at cafeteria tables and playground kickball games come to mind. But, when that post-schoolday program is located on a campus affected by racial tension, student-created segregation, and the occasional riot between groups of students of different races, activity directors have much more on their minds than facilitating arts-andcrafts lessons. Candace Meehan runs Jordan High School’s WRAP, an after-school program funded by a 21st Century Community Learning Center grant given to Long Beach Unified School District and a grant called ASSETS (After School Safety and Enrichment for Teens), which is a federal grant that resulted from the No Child Left Behind initiative. The purpose of the program, according to the school’s WRAP information packet that is distributed to parents, is to help youth improve academically and provide them with a safe place to be after school, participating in fun and enriching activities. Faced with the racism and violence issues that have plagued Jordan’s students for years, Meehan is using her seven, grant-funded years in her position to do more than offer students there activities to do while their parents are working. Cory Bilicko/Signal Tribune During their school’s first-ever youth summit, Jordan High student leaders Victor Barragan (left) and Susana Soto conduct a workshop with 10th graders to address their school’s litter problem. Meehan, who has a master’s degree in school counseling, believes the key to improving student relations and reducing, or altogether eliminating, school violence lies in the hands (and minds) of the kids themselves. She uses her programs to give students opportunities to take control of and responsibility for the social and environmental climate of Jordan. Rather than telling the students what the problems are and what they should do to address them, she allows them to determine and express what those issues are and how they should be see JORdan page 12 New Signal Hill Oversight Board begins its process of dissolving redevelopment CJ Dablo Staff Writer CJ Dablo/Signal Tribune Construction site of the Signal Hill Police Station in February 2012. The police station is one of many projects that the City’s redevelopment agency had managed before the state dissolved redevelopment earlier this year. Weekly Weather Forecast April 27 - May 1, 2012 Friday resolved, and her approach seems to be working. According to the school’s page on the district’s website, during the 20092010 academic year, Jordan’s suspension rate was 4.36 and its expulsion rate was .05. Last school year, those numbers were .08 and .0003, respectively. Meehan says the race-driven riots that characterized Jordan are now a thing of the past. Last Monday, Meehan conducted Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday The Oversight Board for Signal Hill kicked off its first meeting Wednesday by initially approving a key payment schedule that outlines more than $30 million in financial obligations from the Signal Hill Redevelopment Agency (SHRDA) from January to June 2012. Now that the State of California has dissolved redevelopment as of Feb. 1, Signal Hill has begun the process of winding down the agency that was formerly responsible for affordable housing and eliminating blight. see OVERSIGHT page 14 Plasticare Cosmetic Surgery Specialists Tune-Up Specials starting at 50 bucks! Mostly Sunny 70° Lo 55° Mostly Sunny Some Sunshine Lo 58° Lo 58° 75° 75° Clouds & sun 74° Lo 57° Times of clouds & sun 72° Lo 58° This week’s Weekly Weather Forecast sponsored by: The New You is just a phone call away! 562.427.8944 Connie Joy, M.D., FACS Donn M. Hickman, M.D., FACS American Board of Plastic Surgery (562) 427-9900 3756 Long Beach Blvd. Bixby Knolls 920 E. Wardlow Rd., Long Beach 562.427.8944


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