- Should Communities Be Allowed To Leave Large School Districts ? (Video and Poll)
EDUCATION IN AMERICA series looks at trends, innovations, and other matters of importance to our nation’s academic well-being. We welcome writers, educators, policy makers, parents, youth, and other stakeholders. Contact us to publish an article. Participate in article conversations, polls, surveys, and petitions. And use our Community News feature to share information resources, events, etc. A special thank you to Karla Chenault Kennard for editing this article.
Lil Wayne and Kanye West. Beyonce and Jay-Z. Michael Jordan versus Lebron James; who would prevail in a one-on-one game? Will Ohio State beat Michigan. Twerking. Greek steppin’. Selfies and explicitly sexual conversations. Olivia Pope. And The Preacher of LA. All cultural topics. And sadly, all potential distractions.
While we have allowed life distractions to lure us into a delusional state of bliss, profound changes are taking place in America. Some, veiled in virtue, are little more than resurrecting Jim Crow in a fresh, new cloak of racism. A number of transformations will impact the future of African American children, a large segment of whom are trapped in inter-generational poverty, sub-standard housing, and troubled neighborhoods. Education is one of the crucial targets of these changes. And in its the cross-hairs – school desegregation.
A recent FRONTLINE segment entitled Separate and Unequal casts a light on a trend of communities succeeding from large school districts. Proponents claim succession is a necessary response to frustrations with current school districts. Opponents view this is as backlash to school desegregation, implemented in-part through citywide busing.
[pullquote align=”right” textalign=”right” width=”30%”]Perhaps the most disturbing question: “Are people so distracted that this will happen without them even noticing?“[/pullquote]Communities where these efforts occur are typically predominantly white. Wealthy. And, by definition, important contributors to urban school systems with large African American student populations. It would be like upscale Amberley Village or Hyde Park forming school districts by redirecting education dollars from Cincinnati Public Schools. Or Highland Park splintering from Dallas Independent School District.
Separate and Unequal raises serious questions regarding school funding, white flight, public interests versus parents’ private interests, and the status of race relations in America. Indeed, the tension around these questions is likewise evident in the comments of viewers who posted on the PBS page.
[notice]We strive to make kennethdprice.com user-friendly by embedding multimedia content. The Separate and Equal video is available on Youtube for a small fee. To honor PBS efforts to continue in the production of quality videos, we have decided to not embed unauthorized versions. Please click the link below to visit the FRONTLINE website for viewing.
Before taking the poll, please view the 27-minute video here.[/notice]
A powerful community for change will begin in November 2014.
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