Renaming Ceremony of Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School
We are honored to be celebrate the renaming of Falk Elementary to Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School. Ms. Milele was a mentor, advocate, community leader, trailblazer and “Village Mother.” Ms. Milele was the founder and publisher of UMOJA Magazine and was the first African-American woman to serve on the MMSD school board.
The Renaming Ceremony took place on Wednesday, August 25th. Artist Jerry Jordan unveiled his portrait of Ms. Milele to Ms. Milele's family, community and district leaders along with the entire Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School Community at the Back to School night event held on the playground.
The Madison School Board approved the renaming proposal on January 25, 2021 to rename Falk Elementary School as Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School.
Ms. Milele truly embodied what it means to be in the community! At MMSD, we take inspiration from her legacy, and are committed to being intentional about serving our community with humility, compassion, and a deep regard for human decency. It is a fundamental demand of America’s promise, and a requirement of human decency, to expand pathways for all to participate. Our collective charge as leaders, teachers, and staff is to provide a nurturing learning community for ALL of our families and children, so our students can reach their full potential.
- Carlton D. Jenkins, Ph.D., MMSD Superintendent
We are Mother Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School. Our voices, our hearts, and our minds matter. We take pride in ourselves, our school, our families, and our community. We are connected to our ancestors. We are because they were. We have big dreams for ourselves and our community. We will create, collaborate, and connect to build a brighter, better future. We love and respect our teachers and they do the same to us. We will not waste time because it is too valuable and we are too precious and bright. We are, today and every day, scholars striving for success. We are Mother Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School. Together we are strong!
It is an exciting time to join Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School. Ms. Milele was a fierce advocate for the Black community in Madison, and I am honored to join a staff that embodies one of her core values - putting students, families, and the community first. Our students are her legacy. And, it is my intention to lead Anana Elementary School by centering the voices of Black and Brown youth, families, and staff to ensure Milele’s spirit lives on in our school community.
- Chelsea Prochnow, Interim Principal
Letter from Her family
We would like to thank everyone who took the time and actions to make this happen.
We know that Ms. Milele would be humbled and honored, specifically because it is about a school. She knew and fought for a good education for everyone. More importantly she knew the value of an education is grounded in a positive and resourceful environment, filled with encouragement and innovation, rooted in the commitment to excellence and high expectations, and completed with an absolute willingness to see and develop every diamond, even those that sometimes start out rough.
This is the significance of Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School. It’s about doing positive things; building and creating a space to hold your future self. It’s a community filled with positivity, high expectations, and a place where everyone accepts the responsibility and work needed to educate the future. In fact Milele Chikasa Anana Elementary School is a culture where everyone works hard to create a community that engages with the future of all of us. A community where you can grow and be more than what is ever expected of you; a place where everyone is seen as a rare and sparkling jewel, a diamond, which brings joy and laughter and possibility to this world forever.
Trooper, Cathy, Jim, Treater and Amani
The children of Miele Chikasa Anana
Renaming Event Program
Renaming Ceremony Begins
Black Star Drumline will perform and ceremony will commence
Vanessa McDowell, Dr. Carlton D. Jenkins, Carlettra Stanford, Ennis Harvey, Ali Muldrow, Chelsea Prochnow
Yvette Craig, Soror Bobbie Briggs, Soror Dana Warren, Ms. Treater Prestine
Limanya Drum and Dance Ensemble, under the direction of Mandjou Mara and Maya Kadakia, performs traditional music and dance from Guinea and Mali, West Africa. Limanya is composed of a diverse group of dancers and drummers who share a love of African tradition, celebration, and culture.
Mother Milele has meant so much to so many in the Madison community and beyond. It is an honor to be a part of a school bearing her name, where students for generations can learn about her many contributions in service to others.
- Adam Zingsheim, former Anana Principal