Sunday, March 27, 2011

Racism just ain't right!

This week, we read about Brown vs. Board of Education, watched two videos, and then read an article from last weeks edition of the New York Times. I decided to play the videos, one at a time, while doing research and reading peer's blogs.
The way an old teacher of mine explained Brown vs. Board of Education, was that Brown...who was black, wanted to send his child to the white school. His reasoning, was that the white school was better and closer, so why not? Who wouldn't send their kid there? The white school kicked his kid out and then a land mark case was built. In Rob Herbert's article in the New York Times on March 21st, 2011, Seperate and Unequal, this case is the same. Anyone can see that. True, schools are no longer divided amongst color, but is this really true? Like Rob Herbert says, that teachers try to avoid schools stricken by high poverty rates, and that these schools are composed of primarily minorities such as Blacks and Hispanics. So if the "best" teachers are avoiding these schools, and these minorities are being deprived the best possible education possible just because of the money they don't have, then that means they won't be able to get the jobs that require higher achievements, which means their children will be in the same position and the cycle will continue forever. If that's so, then is segregation really gone? Sure we're not segregating based on color, but unintentionally we are since the poor kids go to the poor schools in the poor neighborhoods and the rich kids go to the rich schools in rich neighborhoods.
Where you're born, in most cases, outlines your future and decides on whether you'll be highly successful, or just stay where you are. Unless, something drastic is done. Since good teachers avoid poverty stricken schools like the plague, in order to make a difference, you have to remove poverty out of the equation. You should have great teachers at any and all schools no matter what the poverty rate is. A quote from Hebert's article states The study, released last October, found that “over a period of five to seven years, children in public housing who attended the school district’s most advantaged schools (as measured by either subsidized lunch status or the district’s own criteria) far outperformed in math and reading those children in public housing who attended the district’s least-advantaged public schools.”
My History teacher said this to the class last year. He said,"Let me tell you guys something, I teach this class both here at RIC, and also at Brown. Just because Brown is a more well known and respectable school that cost a lot more money does that mean I teach the course better there. I teach this course the same way at both schools." I think of this quote a lot now. This is the way it should be. Yes, RIC or Brown aren't exactly poverty stricken schools, but I think we can all agree that a lot of people can't afford an education at Brown in which they can at RIC. I think we all also agree that unfortunately a lot of employers will look at resumes, and if 2 applicants have the same grades and everything, and one went to RIC and one went to Brown...well which applicant would you choose? And does that mean one is better than the other? Or just that maybe, one had more money than the other and could afford the "better" education.
Education shouldn't be affected at all depending on where you live and the poverty rates. I think the only way to destroy this concept, is to take poverty out of the equation. But is it really possible. All of the schools are already "labeled" as well as their neighborhoods. I just don't see how anything could really be changed =(