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CISLA Spotlight: Stephen Anglin

Updated: May 20

At the heart of CISLA's mission is our commitment to building trusting relationships with students. This commitment hinges upon the presence of caring adults who not only stand beside but also walk in the shoes of their students, helping them navigate their complex learning environments.  


For African American students, these complex learning environments often carry additional layers of difficulty, requiring even greater support and understanding.  While the underlying causes may vary, the remedy remains consistent: unwavering support.  


At CISLA, this support manifests in the form of dedicated and experienced adults; one of those people is Stephen Anglin.  

Stephen (left) posing with students outside of the CISLA classroom.
Stephen (left) posing with students outside of the CISLA classroom.

Stephen, a native of Inglewood, California, brings a wealth of experience and passion to his role as the site director at Santee Education Complex in South Los Angeles.  

Since joining CISLA in 2021, Stephen has put in tons of effort to create a safe community on Santee's campus driven by programming that supports the unique needs of African American students.

Santee Education Complex students pose for Not Your N-word pledge campaign.
Santee Education Complex students pose for Not Your N-word pledge campaign.

One such program is the N-word Pledge campaign, launched to raise awareness about the severe repercussions of using derogatory language.   


In 2023, Stephen initiated the campaign in response to complaints from students, who conveyed how the term's usage among their peers affected their emotional and mental well-being. The campaign raises awareness about the impacts of the term, and students pledge to refrain from using the term to foster a sense of unity and respect among peers.   

Santee Education Complex student standing next to activist and rapper, Wattsstix for Black Excellence Career Series.
Santee Education Complex student and activist and rapper, Wattsstix pose for Black Excellence Career Series.

Another program, the Black Excellence Career Series, introduces students to professionals from various industries, providing them with insights and mentorship opportunities to explore diverse career paths.  

Not only do students learn about various careers, but they are also given tangible steps to take when looking for a job and advice about how to navigate those specific working environments. Students ask questions and, in some cases, are given opportunities for one-on-one mentorships.


Additionally, Stephen hosts a small group for young African American men, offering them a safe space for open conversations that incorporate a Social-emotional learning (SEL) curriculum to address important topics for their futures.  


Each program offers students more opportunities and resources to navigate their school environment with more confidence and a sense of belonging. When asked why he is driven to empower Black students, Stephen stated,

"I am fully aware of the challenges and barriers that face Black students, and I want to make sure that I can do everything in my power to ensure they are ready and motivated to succeed in the future."
Stephen (far right) with school team members and student.
Stephen (far right) with school team members and student.

Stephen's dedication and creativity in addressing the needs of African American students make a profound difference in their lives, inspiring them to reach their fullest potential. Through initiatives like those led by Stephen Anglin and CISLA, we can empower all students to feel connected and safe in their identity.

As Ryan, a senior at Santee Education Complex puts it, "Mr. Stephen doesn't make us (black male students) feel like we are minorities on our school campus."


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