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Encyclopedia Dubuque

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O'NEAL, Hazel

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O'NEAL, Hazel. (Chicago, IL- ). O'Neal, co-chair of the Education Committee of the Dubuque Chapter of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE (N.A.A.C.P.), was responsible for establishing the multi-cultural reading room at the CENTER FOR A JUST SOCIETY.

In 1988 O'Neall, Ernestine MOSS, Ruby SUTTON and May Jaycox spoke to the curriculum committee of the DUBUQUE COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT. They urged that the district recruit and hire more black teachers and counselors and that more curriculum topics pertinent to blacks should be offered. They also advocated that current teachers be trained to do a better job of instructing about all cultures. (1) In years to come, this meeting led to many of the initiatives started by Thomas DETERMAN. O'Neal was instrumental in founding the Multi-Cultural Nonsexist Community Curriculum Advisory Committee which was involved in selecting textbooks at the elementary level. (2) In 1989 she charged the district with 'doing zippo' towards developing a multi-cultural, non-sexist curriculum. (3)

In 1990 she, however, supported the district's plan to establish a policy of promoting an appreciation of people from different backgrounds. Criticism (4) When the nine-page daft plan entitled "We Want to Change," a proposed integration plan was unveiled in 1991, she objected to the omission of "racism" from the text which used words like "weakness" or "problems." (5) In 1993 as the president of the WASHINGTON NEIGHBORHOOD ASSOCIATION, she was one of three Dubuque residents asked to participate in an Oprah Winfrey television program. The topic was Dubuque's efforts to achieve diversity and harmony. (5)

O'Neal began service on the Dubuque Housing Commission in 1989 and was a member of the State CARE Review Board.

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Source:

1. Nepper, Mark, "Multi-Cultural Studies," Telegraph Herald, February 19, 1988, p. 3

2. Randy Lyon, an elementary teacher, served on the same committee

3. Stanley, Mary, "Blacks: Racial Progress 'Nil,' Telegraph Herald, March 14, 1989, p. 10

4. Glindinning, Mary, "Dubuque School Board Criticized for 'Values' Plan," Telegraph Herald, April 11, 1990, p. 31

5. Arnold, Bill, "Dubuque Residents Support Integration Plan," Telegraph Herald, February 26, 1991, p. 12

6. "Road to Diversity Bumpy," Telegraph Herald, January 3, 1993, p. 50