Posts Tagged ‘racism’

Curriculum Director’s Cautious Interpretation of Texas’ Anti-CRT Law Should Send Legislators Running for Cover… but Will More Likely Embolden Holocaust Deniers

October 15, 2021 Comments off

In a state where tipsters are paid $10,000 for reporting on anyone who abets an abortion it is not unreasonable for teachers to be concerned about their future employment should they fail to meet the standards regarding the “balanced” presentation of history. When asked about how to tell students about the Holocaust, then, it was not surprising to read that a curriculum supervisor suggested that teachers might consider offering both sides of that issue. In a state where the Governor has ignored the truth about vaccines and masks and denied the existence of systemic racism it seems likely that Holocaust deniers might get a sympathetic ear should “their side” of the narrative be withheld. Given this cautious interpretation of offering “balance” it seems that someone in the Texas GOP might step forward to make it clear that the Holocaust DID happen and should definitely be included in the curriculum of ALL high schools. Oh… and while they are at it they might make certain that the science of climate change is also taught. I fear that both announcements are not forthcoming.

Heroic Eastern Shore Superintendent’s Dr. Andrea Kane’s Words About “Evil Noise” Race Ring True: “Give It Some Time; Evil Will Consume Itself”. I Hope She Is Right!

October 11, 2021 Comments off

Of late I have been limiting posts to this blog on public education and preparing to launch a new one that tackles broader subjects… but an article by Erica Green in today’s NYTimes warrants a post. In “Black Lives Matter, She Wrote. Then ‘Everything Just Imploded'”, Ms. Green describes the heart-wrenching experience of Queen Anne’s County (MD) Superintendent Andrea Kane after she sent an e-mail in June 2020 offering her support for those protesting the George Floyd demonstrations and indicating that systemic racism was a problem in her district as much as it was across the country. After a few weeks, the blowback was horrific. You see, Ms. Kane was the first African-American Superintendent hired in that county and the county included a stronghold of Trump supporters who became activated by the email and eventually ran a slate of candidates who sought to have Dr. Kane removed from office. The article recounted all that happened in Queen Anne’s County since Dr. Kane arrived: the “welcome” she got from some of the white school board members, her efforts to increase the awareness of the community about the effects of systemic racism on the student body, and her decision to fire a central office staff member for racist comments he made. 

In the end, the so-called “Patriot” slate won the three seats needed to dismiss Dr. Kane and, despite her accomplishments, she was dismissed. Near the end of the article, Ms. Green describes Dr. Kane’s farewell speech at a newly created community center:

One day in June, almost exactly a year after Dr. Kane had written the email, her voice rose above a rumble of thunder as she addressed a crowd outside the Kennard African American Cultural Heritage Center, named for Lucretia Kennard, the county’s first “supervisor of colored schools.”

One of the first events held at the center, which had educated the county’s Black students during segregation, had been to welcome Dr. Kane. On this day, she was saying goodbye.

There’s some noise out there, and it’s an evil noise,” Dr. Kane told the group. “Give it some time; evil will consume itself. Any time we let children express who they are, and set examples for them about what is right, we can’t go wrong.”

The children are always watching us. We need to set examples of the kind of world we want to leave for them… and it isn’t the world Dr. Kane experienced in Queen Anne’s County. 

Categories: Essays Tags: ,

Texas Template Offers a Quick Path to Desegregation at Public Universities that Works for ALL: Admit the Top 10% from ALL High Schools to College

September 18, 2021 Comments off

An NYTimes article by Auburn graduate Drake Pooley in today’s paper describes a quick way to desegregate public Universities: admit the top 10% of each high school graduating class in the state to college:

We know how to bring about greater student body diversity, because some public universities have done it. When the University of Texas, Austin, started admitting the top 10 percent of every high school graduating class in the state in the late 1990s, it created pathways for schools in more historically disadvantaged communities to send students to that flagship university.

Over the next decade, the number of high schools in Texas whose graduates went there rose from 674 to 900. Once on campus, those students graduated at similar levels as all other students. This program increased earnings for these students with no significant harm to those who were “pushed out,” in terms of graduation rates and earnings, according to a 2020 working paper from the National Bureau of Economic Research.

If such a plan were combined with an influx of federal funds specifically earmarked for need-based scholarships to colleges and junior colleges access to higher education would readily available even to those students attending public high schools in underfunded districts. 

Categories: Essays Tags: ,