Children’s Museums Set Goals to Close Achievement Gap and Create Equity during ACM’s InterActivity Conference

Harlem Children’s Zone®’s Geoffrey Canada Honored
for Strengthening Community

NORWALK, Conn.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–#Childrensmuseums–The Association
of Children’s Museums
’ membership and board of directors adopted a
resolution defining and guiding the growing role of children’s museums
in closing the achievement gap during ACM’s annual InterActivity
conference. Reflective of this achievement and the conference’s
“Collective Impact” meeting theme, ACM also presented its 2016 Great
Friend to Kids Award to Geoffrey Canada for his vision to end
generational poverty in Harlem through the Harlem
Children’s Zone
®, an educational and community
partner providing a variety of services for children and families.

“Children’s museums are integral parts of a community, often working in
tandem with other educational and community partners to support children
and families,” said ACM Executive Director Laura Huerta Migus.
“InterActivity 2016 underscored this role, exploring the field’s
capacity for collective impact. Our ACM Great Friend to Kids Award
honoree Geoffrey Canada further inspired our members to envision how
communities can achieve significant results for youth by working

Hosted by Stepping
Stones Museum for Children
in Norwalk, CT from May 4-7,
InterActivity 2016 focused on children’s museums’ “Collective Impact” by
exploring how children’s museums are part of the fabric that helps
strengthen communities and solve complex educational and social
problems. The conference convened hundreds of leaders from children’s
museums and supporting organizations to learn about and advocate for the
role of children’s museums in closing the achievement gap, promoting
kindergarten readiness, and igniting children’s interest in science,
technology, engineering, and math (STEM).

Achievement Gap

Exercising their “Collective Impact,” ACM members developed and voted on
a resolution during a traditional New England style town hall meeting,
which featured a panel with children’s museum professionals as well as
experts representing other areas of education and childhood development.
Through this process, the ACM board adopted a resolution that:

  • recognizes the commitment of children’s museums to serving all
    children and families and supporting educational equity
  • recognizes the important role children’s museums play as community
    resources, stakeholders, experts, and conveners in the world’s
    learning ecosystems
  • acknowledges the critical value of partnership and taking
    collaborative action for closing the achievement gap
  • commits ACM members to collect and disseminate data on the impact of
    children’s museum efforts to help shape programming to reduce the
    achievement gap for children age 8 and younger, especially during the
    summer months

Geoffrey Canada Wins Top ACM Award

The ACM Great
Friend to Kids Award
honors individuals or institutions with a track
record of making significant and outstanding contributions to
strengthening education and advancing the interests of children. Geoffrey
, the founder and long-time leader of The Harlem Children’s
Zone® (HCZ), is this year’s winner for his pioneering efforts to help
children and families in Harlem, and as a thought leader and passionate
advocate for education reform. Founded in 1990, today HCZ serves more
than 11,000 youth and over 8,000 adults and has become a national model.
Canada and HCZ have been featured in the documentary Waiting for
, as well as on 60 MinutesThe
Oprah Winfrey Show
, and Anderson Cooper 360°.


The Association of Children’s Museum
Shawn Flaherty, 703-554-3609