This letter to the editor appeared in today's Seattle Times:
"Bootstrap's on the other foot
The problem [of racial disparity] continues after APP into AP (Advanced Placement) high-school classes, another club for white, affluent families.
At least 55 percent of Roosevelt students need a level playing field that children in AP with stay-at-home/"hovercraft"-parents/Laurelhurst-privilege don't think a freaking minute about.
And that's one of the Seattle Public Schools' poster-child schools, Roosevelt. I'm at a boiling point.
I am not anti-APP or anti-AP. I am for opportunities for all and if we have only enough dough to fund one program, I want it to be for the kids falling through the cracks, as I believe the others will do fine in general with their notably larger variety of options.
Ideally, I want individual learning plans and high levels of achievement for each in their own way but, like I said, given that apparently everyone cannot be served, I'll help the most vulnerable first and leave the affluent kids "behind." We all know they'll do just fine.
— Kate Martin, mother of two sons at Roosevelt High School, Seattle
The perspective voiced here reflects a popular sentiment in Seattle.
It is tragically misinformed and misguided.
It refers, unfairly, to APP and AP as a "club for white, affluent families".
While Ms Martin claims that she is "not anti-APP or anti-AP" her other statements belie that claim.
Likewise, she claims to be "for opportunities for all", but then selects a class of students who should not have an opportunity.
It's a good thing that we don't only have enough dough to fund one program. There are hundreds of millions of dollars dedicated to meeting the needs of underprivileged students and $350,000 in state grant money that is spent on APP. AP runs on self-help dollars.
Ms Martin presumes, incorrectly, that "everyone cannot be served" and presumes, incorrectly, that the affluent students will be just fine if they are abandoned by the District.