Azekah Jennings, a Boston-based U.S. Justice Department attorney, returned to his native Virgin Islands on vacation but took time out to offer guidance to students on behavior management and schooling over the last two months, according to the Department of Education. Jennings, who works as a civil rights mediator at the Community Relations Service office in Massachusetts is a 1976 graduate of Charlotte Amalie High School.
Jennings held close up sessions in December with students at CAHS, Ivanna Eudora Kean High, Bertha C. Boschulte Junior High and Julius Sprauve School in the St. Thomas-St. John district. This January he brought his message to children at the Behavioral Institute, the Youth Rehabilitation Center, Pearl B. Larsen Elementary School, John H. Woodson Junior High and Central High School on St. Croix.
At the Pearl B. Larsen Elementary School session, Jennings told sixth-grade students, “If you are watching over five hours of TV daily, you are watching too much.”
“That’s why you can’t complete your homework,” he told them. He also counseled Larsen students on being respectful to each other, to parents, to teachers and to other grownups. He challenged them to remain focused, to avoid peer pressure and to begin their preparation for college early.
Jennings began his law career in the U.S. Virgin Islands working in the V.I. Justice Department on St. Thomas and then on St. Croix before transferring to the mainland where he also does similar outreach work.
The Community Relations Service is the Justice Department’s "peacemaker" for community conflicts and tensions arising from differences of race, color and national origin. Created by the Civil Rights Act of 1964, according to Education, CRS is the only federal agency dedicated to assist state and local units of government, private and public organizations, and community groups with preventing and resolving racial and ethnic tensions, incidents and civil disorders, and in restoring racial stability and harmony.