Timeline

2020

  • Asian American communities nationwide feel the impact of COVID-19 and rise in Anti-Asian hate crimes.
  • Anti Asian hate crimes rise by 150% in 2020 in the US. Many others are unreported.
2020

2021

  • Anti Asian hate crimes rise by 339% from 2020 to 2021 in the US.
2021

March 16, 2021

  • Atlanta Spa Murders – 6 out of 8 victims are women of Asian descent.
  • Georgia’s Asian American communities rally for change.
March 16, 2021

March 2021

  • Virtual town hall – Asian American educators, parents and allies gather to learn about what Asian American history is, whether it is taught  in Georgia public schools, and what Georgia’s policy landscape looks like. Hosted by Weonhee Anne Shin, featuring Dr. Chris Suh (Emory University), Dr Sohyun An (Kennesaw State University), E. Lim (Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta)
  • Steering committee is formed from community volunteers to discuss next steps. Group is facilitated by Asian Americans Advancing Justice – Atlanta.
March 2021

March 2021 - December 2021

  • Group meets weekly to discuss plans, goals and strategy. 
  • Focus evolves from promoting solely Asian American history to promoting how it is interwoven with all American histories.
  • Foundational work begins with building relationships with history-centered organizations.
  • Key learnings – Georgia currently offers Asian American history as an elective; social studies standards are not due for revision in the near future; there hasn’t been any Asian American history learning opportunities for Georgia educators.
March 2021 - December 2021

July 2021

  • Illinois becomes the first state to require Asian American history in K-12 public schools. This becomes the beginning of other states passing similar policies. We learned that these states had pre-existing social studies requirement legislation. However, Georgia does not have such precedence.
July 2021

September 2021

  • Parents in our group speak at the Gwinnett County Public School (GCPS) Board Meeting. GCPS is the largest school district in Georgia, with 170,000+ students (80% are students of color).
September 2021

December 2021

  • The GCPS Curriculum Department invites our group to bring Asian American history to the district. Dr. Sohyun An and Dr. Theresa Alviar-Martin from the group is approved to lead quarterly professional development for GCPS educators in the 2022-2023 school year.
December 2021

January 2022

  • Official name change to Asian American Voices for Education (AAVEd – pronounced “avid”)
  • Goals are created and rolled out:
  • 2022 – Educator professional development
  • 2023 – Parent/community engagement programs
  • 2024 – Youth engagement projects
January 2022

April 2022

  • AAVEd speaks at the Georgia Council for History Education (GCHE) monthly meeting (“Widening Our Lens: Integrating Asian American Voices & Perspectives in Social Studies Classroom.” This presentation is the highest attended session in 2022.
April 2022

July 2022

  • AAVEd hosts Georgia’s first statewide K-12 educator professional development on Asian American history. Funded by Center for Pan Asian Community Service’s STOP AAPI Hate campaign.
July 2022

August 2022

  • Start of year-long Gwinnett County Public Schools teacher professional development.
  • Selected as top 10 Gold Futures Challenge grantee (funding for 2023).
August 2022

September 2022

  • AAVEd is incorporated and 501c(3) tax exempt.
September 2022

October 2022

  • AAVEd exhibits and speaks at the Georgia Council for the Social Studies (GCSS) Conference. This is the largest social studies conference in Georgia with over 600 educators in attendance. AAVEd is the first Asian American group to present.
October 2022

January 2023

  • 2023 Focus- Parent and Community Engagement (also continue to create educator resources and offer professional development)
  • Awarded $2,500 Georgia Humanities grant
January 2023

February 2023

  • Decatur Lunar New Year Festival, a pan-Asian celebration with over 2,500 in attendance, and donates $16,000 in proceeds to AAVEd.
February 2023

March 2023

  • 100 Heritage Month Kit project launched (sponsored by Asian American Women’s Political Initiative, Gold Futures Challenge, Georgia Humanities, Very Asian Foundation). These curated (FREE) kits for parents, educators and caregivers will be brought to classrooms for AANHPI Heritage Month in May.
March 2023

April 2023

  • Heritage Month Kit project: AAVEd meets and exceeds the goal to bring AANHPI heritage into 100 classrooms in Georgia. Final count: 280 classroom kits reserved.
April 2023
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Asif Jessani

Advisory Board Member

Asif Jessani is a professional volunteer. He currently serves as a board member for Artworks Gwinnett, Gwinnett County Parks Foundation, and Gwinnett County Public Library Foundation. He also serves as an advisory board member for the United Way of Greater Atlanta – Gwinnett and Atlanta Speech School. With a passion for early childhood education, he is also involved with Gwinnett County’s early learning initiative, Building Babies’ Brains. As part of the Ismaili Muslim Community, he has been a volunteer preschool teacher for the past 24 years.

Asif is also actively involved with the communications and outreach team for the Ismaili Muslim Community and previously led the marketing and media team for the United States Ismaili Games. When he isn’t volunteering, Asif takes on the responsibility of partner at CCS: Marketing & Technology, which provides chief marketing and technology officer services and branded items for mission-driven organizations.