Tuesday, May 1, 2012
OU Charter School Shows off its Detroit Pride on the Today ShowThe Detroit Academy of Arts and
Sciences (DAAS), an Oakland University charter school, was featured May 1 on NBC's Today Show. The news segment with NBC News correspondent and
former first daughter Jenna Bush Hager, featured DAAS' student choir, soloists and
director Angela Kee, creators of the popular “Detroit State of Mind” video.
Originally, "Detroit State of Mind" was a project Kee assigned after hearing her students talk about the negative things they hear about their city. Students were asked to write a song that reflects Detroit in their own words. She says, "I wanted them to be proud to be a Detroit citizen."
Once the lyrics were written, students got a special opportunity to produce a professional video, which has received over 56,000 views on YouTube. Since the video's launch, the DAAS choir has gotten many offers to perform at some high-profile events including
TEDxDetroit and a halftime show for the NFL's Detroit Lions.
Choir Director Kee says the project has enhanced the children's feelings about themselves and their city. "The new optimism that I see is that the children seem to put their chest out and they walk prouder, and they speak about their city and where they live with a sense of pride that I did not see before."
DAAS is a K-8 charter school authorized by Oakland University. For more information about DAAS, visit
daask12.com. For more information about Oakland University’s Office of Public School Academies and Urban Partnerships, visit oakland.edu/psa