Let’s play state the obvious:
- Minorities will eventually become the majority
- Minorities account for nearly half of the student population in the U.S
- High school graduation rate for black males still trails that for white males
- The combination of high-minority, low-income education environments have perpetuated an education gap in America
According to a recent report done by Civil Rights Project at UCLA 80 percent of Latino students and 74 percent of black students are in schools where the majority of students are not white. More specifically, 43 percent of Latinos and 38 percent of black attend “intensely segregated schools” where white students comprise 10 percent or less of the student body. If I didn’t know any better, I’d think these were statistics from the 80’s, but unfortunately they’re not.
Do you realize it’s been 60 years since the desegregation of schools? I guess the saying, “the more things change, the more they stay the same” rings true. The report showed that segregation is not limited to race: blacks and Latinos are twice as likely as white or Asian students to attend schools with a substantial majority of poor children. Not surprisingly, California, New York and Texas has the largest population of segregated Latino students. Black students are more segregated in Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston and D.C. “Extreme segregation is becoming more common,” said Gary Orfield, an author of the report who is co-director of the Civil Rights Project.
To reverse this trend of resegregation the report offers suggestions like implementing laws that encourage integration and reauthorizing regulations that support integration. “Simply sitting next to a white student does not guarantee better educational outcomes for students of color,” the report reads. “Instead, the resources that are consistently linked to predominantly white and/or wealthy schools help foster real and serious educational advantages over minority segregated settings.”
I’ve previously written about my experiences having my son in a school system that seemed to belong in the “resegregation” category, and although I understand the reports possible solutions, it reminds me of the concept of the redistribution of wealth, but in this case, the redistribution of knowledge and resources. Although it sounds like a great concept, will it ever happen?