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KCPS Honors Derrick Johnson and Scholastic

KCPS Honors Chiefs Linebacker Derrick Johnson and Scholastic as Community Champions for Their Work to Promote Literacy


Kansas City Public Schools recognized Derrick Johnson, Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation and Scholastic, the educational book publisher, as Community Champions for their work to create reading oases for KCPS students.

Interim Superintendent, Al Tunis, and the Board of Directors honored Johnson, the foundation and Scholastic during the Board's Wednesday, Nov. 18 meeting. KCPS uses the Community Champions award to recognize contributions made by partners in education and individual volunteers.

Over the past year, Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation, with support from Scholastic, opened five DJ's Discover Dens in schools across Kansas City. These schools include Academia de Ninos and Our Lady of the Angels Catholic School, as well as three Kansas City Public Schools, Satchel Paige Elementary School, Crispus Attucks Elementary School and Benjamin Banneker Elementary School.

Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation transforms underutilized classrooms and libraries into reading oases, decorated with Chiefs colors, Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation posters and comfortable furniture to read on. DJ's Discover Dens are stocked with 1,200 age-appropriate books, donated by Scholastic. Johnson's ultimate goal is open dens in every Title I school in Kansas City.

About Kansas City Public Schools

Kansas City Public Schools is dedicated to graduating students that are college, career, and workforce ready. This mission is supported by innovative classroom instruction, engaging programs, highly qualified employees, and an engaged and well-informed community.

About Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation

The mission of Derrick Johnson's Defend the Dream Foundation is to provide low income and inner city young people with opportunities and resources to reach their full potential. Learn more at

On Wednesday Derick Johnson opened DJ's Den at Satchel Paige Elementary school. This will work with his Defend the Dream Foundation and supply books to local students.

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