Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Segregation and Seattle Schools

You'd have to be very new to this district to not know we have a fairly regular pattern of segregation in this district.  I will continue to say that I believe it is mainly the result of redlining for decades in Seattle and yet, was probably helped by the district following along.

The district did trying busing in the '70s but my impression is that almost no one was happy.  Just as many high school parents are today arguing against long bus rides for their students because of not having friends in the community, after-school activities and family time, many families back then found busing to have that problem.

With all the flailing around about where HC high school students will go and drawing high school boundaries, there has not been much talk about segregation.  

There have been several new articles on this extended topic (bold mine in all cases). 

 The latest comes from Vox.
We can draw school zones to make classrooms less segregated. This is how well your district does.

It has an interactive element that allows you to see if how our district draws boundaries increases or decreases segregation (spoiler: increases).   The basic premise is if you draw regular type boundaries that largely resemble a box, you'll get more segregation.  Irregular boundaries will decrease segregation.

Also included in that article is the hidden story that charter schools are both increasing segregation within traditional districts and becoming more segregated themselves. 

AP News
Charter schools are among the nation’s most segregated, an Associated Press analysis finds — an outcome at odds, critics say, with their goal of offering a better alternative to failing traditional public schools.

National enrollment data shows that charters are vastly over-represented among schools where minorities study in the most extreme racial isolation. As of school year 2014-2015, more than 1,000 of the nation’s 6,747 charter schools had minority enrollment of at least 99 percent, and the number has been rising steadily.

In the AP analysis of student achievement in the 42 states that have enacted charter school laws, along with the District of Columbia, the performance of students in charter schools varies widely. But schools that enroll 99 percent minorities — both charters and traditional public schools — on average have fewer students reaching state standards for proficiency in reading and math.

“Desegregation works. Nothing else does,” said Daniel Shulman, a Minnesota civil rights attorney. “There is no amount of money you can put into a segregated school that is going to make it equal.”
From an excellent column from Brookings by Andre M. Perry:
The Brookings report found that among the racially imbalanced schools, charters stood out as having a much higher representation of black students. Their imbalance rating is roughly four times that of traditional public schools. (You can see how your school compares through this interactive map). Charters didn’t cause segregation, but they sure aren’t helping matters.

We shouldn’t conflate insincere calls for diversity (read: making schools whiter) with demands to topple segregated schools. Schools should get the resources they need, whether middle-class white students attend them or not.

Our fascination with inclusion is inherently corrupt, because it is born of the misconception that whiter schools are better.

But education reform absent an effort to dismantle segregated schools is equally bad. 

To blame teachers, parents, and district bureaucracy (especially when they are black) is to ignore the history of how schools became depressed. 

To dismiss segregation is to accept structural inequality and the status quo.

From the North Carolina News Observer:
Charter schools in North Carolina are more segregated than traditional public schools and have more affluent students. 

Most charters have either a largely white population or a largely minority population, according to a News & Observer analysis. On the whole, charter schools are more white and less Latino than schools run by local districts. 

The original charter law was the product of a bipartisan compromise brokered by a House Republican and a Senate Democrat. The requirements for racial and ethnic diversity were the authors’ response to worries of charter opponents that the schools would cherry-pick the best students, said former Rep. Steve Wood, the Republican who negotiated the law. 

A federal district court judge has decided that Gardendale – a predominantly white city in the suburbs of Birmingham, Alabama – can move forward in its effort to secede from the school district that serves the larger county. The district Gardendale is leaving is 48 percent black and 44 percent white. The new district would be almost all white.

As in many other cases over the past two decades, the judge conceded to resegregation, speculating that if she stopped the move, innocent parties would suffer: Black students who stayed in Gardendale would be made to feel unwelcome and those legitimately seeking educational improvements would be stymied.
Simply put, the judge could not find an upside to blocking secessionists whom she herself characterized as racially motivated.
Darrell Allison, executive director of the pro-school choice group Parents for Educational Freedom, said comparing traditional and charter schools creates a distorted picture because charters don’t have the resources districts do to create diverse schools. 

Lack of transportation is an impediment to students whose parents don’t have cars or have work schedules that prevent them from driving their children to school.
Parental choice drives charter enrollment, he said. Some charters are mostly made up of black students because black parents seek out schools that are run by African-Americans, or those that employ black male teachers, Allison said.
“We have to take into consideration where we are as a society,” he said. “We talk to a number of families of color, where 70 percent or higher are single-parent. They are actively looking for good educational institutions. They are also looking for Afro-American role models, particularly for their Afro-American boys.”
Another troubling turn of events; schools within districts collectively wanting to secede from their  district. 

From Daily Kos:
In May, a report by released by UCLA's Civil Rights Project and Penn State University's Center for Education and Civil Rights confirmed that school segregation in the South is on the rise, with more black and Latino students attending intensely segregated, high-poverty schools than in the past several decades. 

It’s easy to assume this can be attributed to systemic inequality—the rise of charter schools, poor funding to the most needy schools, white flight to the suburbs, and increasingly segregated neighborhoods. All of this is true, but it can also be attributed to a rising phenomenon occurring all across the country: smaller communities seceding away from larger school districts in order to form smaller, wealthier, and whiter ones. In this way, school segregation persists, with white parents who have some financial means doing their best to create borders around their schools that keep poor black and brown students out.

This is how we know that America is truly an individualistic society. Rather than share resources to make sure poor kids get educated, wealthy parents in this country would rather wall themselves in to make sure their kids only mix and mingle with other wealthy kids.
This is not only damaging to poor kids’ well-being and future success, leaving them with no other options but failing schools, it’s also not good for wealthy kids in the long run. Studies show that there are tremendous benefits to socioeconomically and racially diverse schools—including the reduction of racial bias, increased college enrollment and lowered drop out rates, increased critical thinking and problem solving skills, and improved intellectual self-confidence. These are assets for students of all backgrounds and colors. 
  
Since 2000, 70 other communities have tried to secede from their district, according to [a recent EdBuild report.] Two-thirds of those of those secession attempts have been successful, and most of the other cases are still ongoing. [Rebecca Sibilia, from EdBuild who studies school secession] points out that some of these secession efforts are logical, like the one in California’s San Fernando Valley. But many of the proposed school borders are along socioeconomic lines, and they would further isolate poor children in segregated schools.
From Time
The breaking away of school districts is a related phenomenon, one that has frustrated the work of integration by appealing to smaller local concerns over grander public ones. More and more, parents see a school in the context of what it can achieve for their child: Education for all has lost out to Princeton for mine.

The Century Foundation concluded that only about “8 percent of all public school students currently attend school districts or charter schools that use socioeconomic status as a factor in student assignment.” The report’s tone was hopeful, because while the number of districts around country that consciously practiced class integration was a paltry 91 out of more than 13,000, that’s more than double what it was in 2007.

The Supreme Court’s most severe blow since Milliken came in 2007, in the Parents Involved in Community Schools v. Seattle School District No. 1 case, in which it prohibited the use of “explicit racial classifications” in school admissions. Wrote Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., "The way to stop discrimination on the basis of race is to stop discriminating on the basis of race." By conflating integration with discrimination, Roberts effectively reversed Brown v. Board.
But
There is another Jefferson County, in another Southern state, that has done things very differently than Jefferson County, Alabama. The one in Kentucky includes the city of Louisville and its proximal suburbs, and a school district that educates 100,000 children.

It does so in a rare big-city system that considers racial integration a crucial goal. And it has done so even after the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2007 decision in the Parents Involved case, which forbade Jefferson County from using race as the determining factor for school assignments. The system’s administrators came up with a formula that used socioeconomic status instead. While some students travel long distances on buses, the result is that the schools have remained racially balanced.
Donna Hargens, the system’s superintendent, told me the push for diversity has to be combined with choice, so that parents don’t feel as if they’re being railroaded into integration. Magnet schools are “absolutely essential,” she says, presumably because they signal a commitment to excellence; Hartford, Connecticut, also relies on magnet schools in its much-praised integration plan, which pulls in students from the wealthy white suburbs that surround the impoverished urban core. As a sign of enthusiasm for integration, Hargens cited the finding that 42 percent of parents do not choose the closest school for their children.

36 comments:

Megan Hazen said...

Thanks for this. There is a lot we can do to enhance equity and opportunity in this district that has nothing to do with AL services, but I'm not sure how much conversation ever gets directed there. I think it would be great to think about re-drawing boundaries with an eye towards integration, or providing choice that allows every student to have greater mobility.

NESeattleMom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Too much of the conversation in Seattle around this uncomfortable issue centers on HCC and advanced learning, as if those were the primary sources of school segregation in Seattle. It seems HCC and AL being disproportionately white has more to do with schools reflecting our neighborhoods, which are typically highly stratified along both race and income/class lines.

Focusing on HCC and Advanced Learning misses the larger point about housing patterns and neighborhoods. And gives the district and the city convenient cover to punt on finding meaningful solutions.

Concerned Parent

Anonymous said...

Not everybody hated busing.

https://www.thestranger.com/feature/2016/04/13/23945368/how-seattle-gave-up-on-busing-and-allowed-its-public-schools-to-become-alarmingly-resegregated

Bob

Anonymous said...

thanks mw for starting this thread. seems harris is right not just about seattle but across america. the ripples of forced segregation roil our current assignment plan. but not in the ways you would think. also sps has a much higher frl percent than its independent counterparts squewing things even further.

what this data analysis really means is that for sps to impose pathways across high schools in 20-21 they will have to pay a ton of mitigation money to make that happen and not sure why they would do that with only ghs south of the cut would be ready; furthering the north south divide.

no caps

Anonymous said...

"Rather than share resources to make sure poor kids get educated, wealthy parents in this country would rather wall themselves in to make sure their kids only mix and mingle with other wealthy kids."

Really? Did they survey/interview those families to ask why they wanted to break off into their own school district? Is it possible there are actually other non-racist and/or non-classist reasons, such as a desire for greater rigor, more challenging academic classes, etc? Do you think that if the quality of education was high in the mixed schools the parents still would have tried to break free? I'm guessing they would not have. Problems tend to rise when the economic and/or racial disparities mirror disparities in academic preparedness and performance, and when districts don't respond in ways that address the educational needs of all students.

messy

Melissa Westbrook said...

Bob, I didn't say anyone "hated" busing. I said it didn't work out well for most. And that article is a single person's experience.

Messy, I think given that it seems, even to the judge, that people will make kids of color feel unwelcome in those schools, yeah, I think it's about race.

But again, you are right; we need great schools everywhere and meeting all students' needs.

Owler said...

It is a balance between the needs of the community versus the needs/wants of the individual. Seattle benefits when we have schools that are racially and economically diverse. But do I want my child on a bus for an hour each way? No; I would much rather have a school in the neighborhood that can accommodate my child while leaving time for activities, friends, and homework. And I totally get why parents in the north or south want strong schools near them.

Tin foil for all libs said...

There is no proof of forced segregation. The only thing children from the 70s experienced was forced integration. It was horrific for both black and white students. Put on your ...

Tin foil

Anonymous said...

I would like to unpack this statement:"Problems tend to rise when the economic and/or racial disparities mirror disparities in academic preparedness and performance, and when districts don't respond in ways that address the educational needs of all students."

Here is what I see:

Problems tend to rise when the economic disparities mirror disparities in academic preparedness and performance.

Seriously why say "and/or racial" the achievement gaps have little to nothing to do with race. They have everything to do with SES. No one even shrugs at the idea that asians are not considered a minority anymore. Same thing. Because asians are not 80% frl status in SPS.

"and when districts don't respond in ways that address the educational needs of all students." like with honors for all, and social experiment social studies. Now they want to do pathways for all; because the mostly HCC kids are getting pathways why shouldn't we. YOU DO! It is called your neighborhood school.

Haters Hate-66

Anonymous said...

@ Hataers Hate-66,

Re: the first part of my comment, because that's how districts tend to report the gaps--by race.

Re: the second part, you're wrong. Neighborhood schools often can't or won't serve academically highly gifted students well. Many teachers and principals admit it, suggesting students go elsewhere. Many parents have seen it, forced to find alternate arrangements. And now the district has come out and officially said they can't do it yet either (hence the 2021 high school idea).

Messy

Carol Simmons said...

I strongly encourage everyone to read Ann LaGrelius Siqueland's Book "Without A Court Order" published in 1981. This book describes the events which led the Seattle School Board to adopt a city wide desegregation plan on December 1977.

The desegregation of Seattle Schools was successful for many students and families. Could it be successful again? It would depend on priorities.

Anonymous said...

Messy we both agree neighborhood schools seldom can meet the HC student's needs.

Haters hate-66

Anonymous said...

Other suggested reading: the ruling on Parents Involved in Community Schools vs Seattle School District, the case that overturned Seattle's race-based assignment plan.

...The Seattle district, which has never operated legally segregated schools or been subject to court-ordered desegregation, classified children as white or nonwhite, and used the racial classifications as a “tiebreaker” to allocate slots in particular high schools.

...It is well established that when the government distributes burdens or benefits on the basis of individual racial classifications, that action is reviewed under strict scrutiny.

...We have emphasized that the harm being remedied by mandatory desegregation plans is the harm that is traceable to segregation, and that “the Constitution is not violated by racial imbalance in the schools, without more.”

...Even when it comes to race, the plans here employ only a limited notion of diversity, viewing race exclusively in white/nonwhite terms in Seattle... In design and operation, the plans are directed only to racial balance, pure and simple, an objective this Court has repeatedly condemned as illegitimate.


https://scotusblog.files.wordpress.com/2007/06/05-908.pdf

history lesson

Melissa Westbrook said...

I read the ruling when it first came out. To note, the majority said that race all by itself cannot be used (as in SPS' racial tiebreaker) BUT that as part of an overall package, it could be used. That said, I think most districts became very wary of that and some started using income.

Also, the racial tiebreaker employed by SPS had been used by white students to gain access to Franklin. That was what the district had been using as their argument - it was not just for students of color.

Anonymous said...

@Haters Hate "Seriously why say "and/or racial" the achievement gaps have little to nothing to do with race. They have everything to do with SES. "

Yes. The word is really slow to get out and I wonder why in an educated city like Seattle. Identifying the link between income and the achievement gap issue is the first step in addressing it.

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/21/income-achievement-gap-al_n_1105783.html

http://http://hechingerreport.org/growing-income-achievement-gap-overshadows-race/

/publications/educational-leadership/may13/vol70/num08/The-Widening-Income-Achievement-Gap.aspx

JH

Anonymous said...

such a narrative! of course it's all about SES.

race does however have a very strong effect on that.

do folks here think there are not substantial remnants of the white superiority culture that allowed bondage of Africans, by our founders(conflict of interest as slaveowners(sic)), to be enshrined in the U.S. Constitution?

Followed,after a war to end slavery as a legal economic resource but not to end oppression, by systematic state sanctioned discrimination, like right here in Seattle, the NW version of Jim Crow.

Anyone read this article about how Portland is still a no-go zone if you're black?
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/retropolis/wp/2017/06/07/when-portland-banned-blacks-oregons-shameful-history-as-an-all-white-state/?utm_term=.fd8f923b46dc

Also cultural oppression, Jackie Robinson? Sambo's Restaurant? Looney Tunes?

And now it's all, ain't about race, s'about poverty!!

Next rant will be about white inherited wealth and privilege

W.G.

Anonymous said...

The court used Franklin of an example of why the SPS race-based assignment plan, and the SPS idea of diversity, was not justifiable.

"...at Franklin High School in Seattle, the racial tiebreaker was applied because nonwhite enrollment exceeded 69 percent, and resulted in an incoming ninth-grade class in 2000– 2001 that was 30.3 percent Asian-American, 21.9 percent African-American, 6.8 percent Latino, 0.5 percent Native-American, and 40.5 percent Caucasian. Without the racial tiebreaker, the class would have been 39.6 percent Asian-American, 30.2 percent African-American, 8.3 percent Latino, 1.1 percent Native-American, and 20.8 percent Caucasian. See App. in No. 05–908, at 308a. When the actual racial breakdown is considered, enrolling students without regard to their race yields a substantially diverse student body under any definition of diversity.13"

history lesson

Anonymous said...

@Haters Hate,

"No one even shrugs at the idea that asians are not considered a minority anymore."

This is a very harmful and thoughtless stereotype I've seen perpetuated on this blog by a number of people that is far removed from reality and needs to stop.

- 51.8% of Asians in SPS qualify for free lunch (4,051 students)
- Asian's free lunch status is much more similar to Hispanic stats (64.5%, 4,211 students)than White (9.6%, 2,403)

Anti Bias

Melissa Westbrook said...

This is a very harmful and thoughtless stereotype I've seen perpetuated on this blog by a number of people that is far removed from reality and needs to stop

No, it is NOT being perpetuated by this blog; it's said by some commenters. I have consistently pointed out this oddity about Asians somehow not being a minority.

You're right; people either need to stop or explain to us how being Asian isn't being part of a minority.

Anonymous said...


Great article about basketball star Jaylen Brown on race in sports and society.

https://www.theguardian.com/sport/2018/jan/09/jaylen-brown-boston-celtics-nba-interview

"Brown admits that, when he was 14, “It wounds you. But when I got older and went to the University of California [Berkeley] I learnt about a more subtle racism and how it filters across our education system through tracking, hidden curriculums, social stratification and things I had no idea of before. I was really emotional – because one of the most subtle but aggressive ways racism exists is through our education system.”

Brown’s readiness to talk about politics and culture might account for the surreal suggestion in 2016 that he was “too smart” for the NBA. From the outside, ‘smart’ seemed a euphemism for ‘troublesome’. What did Brown think when, as a teenager, he heard words unlikely to be used in conjunction with a white athlete? “It was hinting at something very problematic within society. It bothered me but I was so focused on getting to where I was going I never dissected it or pointed it out to anybody."

vine maple

Anonymous said...

Asian is too broad a category. It is hard to know for sure without more detailed info, but I suspect there is a huge gap between Asian people of different nationalities who have come to the US. If you break it down, do you see kids of Chinese and Japanese descent (often no longer considered “minority” or more realistically, less underprivileged in HCC or FRL at the same rates as other Asian groups?

In the same way sticking HCC into a lower income school will raise average test scores without actually affecting any individual test score, lumping very different groups into one large category can really skew results.

NE Parent

Outsider said...

"More and more, parents see a school in the context of what it can achieve for their child: Education for all has lost out to Princeton for mine."

Comments like these are used to smear the middle class, while the wealthy put their kids in private schools and skate by untouched. Often, like Cary Moon, the wealthy strike an uber-progressive pose and celebrate the possibility of using other people's children for social engineering while their own are safely removed in private school.

Rich parents secure a good education for their kids in private school: "that's just what works for us."

Middle-class parents seek a good education for their kids wherever they can find it: "see how selfish they are!"

What gets lost amid this towering hypocrisy is the implication hidden even in the Time Magazine smear that these parents are correct -- integrated schools will indeed limit the education of their children. Are they correct? Rich people in private schools seem to think so. The house prices in Bellevue suggest that lots of people think so. If you want to know what people really think, ignore what they say under the watchful gaze of the PC police, and look at what they do with six-figure sums of money. Are they correct? If they are not correct, what actual evidence can you provide to convince them? Not just PC blather but actual evidence. Surely if they are wrong, there would be no problem supplying evidence, and that would be so much more efficient than these discussions that go forever in circles and end up nowhere.

Anonymous said...

Anyone catch the NPR piece on racial wage gap today? Biggest wage gap in the restaurant industry exists in... drum roll.... the oh so liberal and progressive San Francisco Bay Area, which many would recognize as a sister area to our great PNW.I guess Hater would probably chalk it up to SES, or some other excuse. The white patrons tip black servers an average of $5 less per hour than white servers. So Haters Gonna Hate, I’m sure you got some excuse.., but it’s pretty clear to most folk, you can’t hide behind SES, which is clear to everyone except those who cling to their superiority measures.

Lover

Bubba said...

Ignoring race by pretending/ignoring that our policies impact disproportionally along the lines of race— how’s that court finding working with our current system of “open enrollment” and school choice. “Choice” IS a privilege and the “open” enrollment process is closed to some due to institutionalized barriers (racism). Enrolling students without regard to race is one thing. Maintaining a system where we do not differentiate equality and equity is another.

Anonymous said...

@ NE parent "Asian is too broad a category." You know what? So is white. Also, different ethnicities & histories & differences in socioeconomics. There is also generational poverty.

People should NEVER make assumptions about wealth, family history, based upon someone's appearance. In addition there is a huge amount of poverty and lack of opportunity that affect people who check the "white" box. Maybe less apparent in Seattle than outside of Seattle. But there are lots of them.

As I sat down to help an HC student's parent understand the mess about what HC is in different grades, HC pathways, boundaries & HS, I am contemplating why we talk so much about access, yet people are not as concerned with helping F& R lunch kids who are actually enrolled in HC. This kid's parent is very confused about the program (like the rest of us) and the kid accessed it very late and almost not at all.

We have no idea the numbers as I don't think SPS has released the data and I am sure it is very small. However they exist. This student born to a 16 year old, shares a room with a parent in a group rental house and also has a disability. But likely if in a room all those HCC haters would make all sorts of wrong assumptions about background due to also being white.

Racism is real and intersects with socioeconomics. There is also a history in the country of discrimination against poor people of all races. Poor whites included. However, people also need to be looked at as individuals.
Poverty affects all

S Lee said...

The Vox article was very interesting. Thanks for posting it, Melissa. One of the main problems with the Vox article, though, is that it didn't mention Asians once. We can't have a conversation about race in Seattle public schools without talking about Asians, so articles like this that are based on research primarily in the U.S. South are only of limited use in application to Seattle.

And you can tell that I'm not the only one who raised an eyebrow. Just look at the correction at the bottom of the article: "Correction: A previous version of this piece said American schools were as segregated now as they were 50 years ago, but it’s actually schools in the South that are as segregated as they were 50 years ago." Quite a correction- essentially saying, "whoops, we thought the South was the whole U.S."

We just can't have this conversation in Seattle without including Asians. Isn't Franklin's student body essentially 50% Asian? That is not a trivial piece of the puzzle.

I think we also can't have the conversation without talking about option schools, choice assignments, and private schools. Because many neighborhoods are nowhere near as segregated as the public schools in the neighborhoods would suggest.

M.R. said...

@ Bubba

You say, “Choice” IS a privilege and the “open” enrollment process is closed to some due to institutionalized barriers (racism).

Cleveland is an option school. Families have to choose it during the open enrollment process to go there. Cleveland's student body is
Asian 48.5%
Black / African American 28.3%
Hispanic / Latino of any race(s) 10.0%
White 7.0%
Two or More Races 5.5%
American Indian / Alaskan Native 0.6%
Native Hawaiian / Other Pacific Islander 0.1%

The students at this option school are 93% students of color. So, institutional racism is clearly not keeping students of color out.

Anonymous said...

"Not just PC blather but actual evidence. Surely if they are wrong, there would be no problem supplying evidence, and that would be so much more efficient than these discussions that go forever in circles and end up nowhere."

By PC blather do you mean the idea that we are one society and should share the burden of past discrimination towards less fortunate kids?

One could say it's irrational and unfounded fears that drive parents into private school and the HCC.

Where is the evidence that private school and self-contained gifted programs produce better outcomes?

What does it even mean? More money? More life satisfaction? Better health?

PC "blather" is about the future where people don't live in poverty and hopelessness.

Where all schools are good schools for all kids.

half full

Melissa Westbrook said...

NE Parent, what you say is true about different countries of origin for the label "Asian" - it still doesn't make it right to try to ignore any person of Asian origin as a minority.

"People should NEVER make assumptions about wealth, family history, based upon someone's appearance."

Amen to that (but also keeping in mind white privilege).

Anonymous said...

And...circle back to Parents Involved in Community Schools vs Seattle School District:

In the Seattle case, the school district has gone further in describing the methods and criteria used to determine assignment decisions based on individual racial classifications, but it has nevertheless failed to explain why, in a district composed of a diversity of races, with only a minority of the students classified as “white,” it has employed the crude racial categories of “white” and “non-white” as the basis for its assignment decisions. Far from being narrowly tailored, this system threatens to defeat its own ends, and the district has provided no convincing explanation for its design.

One could argue SPS is still making decisions that "threaten to defeat its own ends."

history lesson

Anonymous said...

It looks like since HCC is basically being shut down by SPS those who benefit from the HCC service are trying to cause a huge racial argument by trying to resurrect the previously dangerous practice of forced busing.

They must feel if SPS has ruined it for them and theirs then they will ruin it for all unless SPS yields to their demands.

This is classic, Alinsky would be proud of the HCC crowd.

JS

M.R. said...

One could say it's irrational and unfounded fears that drive parents into private school and the HCC.

One could say that, but it would be baseless hate mongering and it's not true. To look at the list of private schools in the area, it's clear that a huge percentage of them are religious. Do families choose religiously affiliated schools out of irrational and unfounded fears? They'd all be different fears then, presumably, because we've got catholic schools and islamic schools and jewish schools and protestant schools and on and on. Are you saying all those families have the same irrational and unfounded fears? I don't buy it.

Anonymous said...

@half full (apparently a different half full than the moniker I have used for some time) wrote:

By PC blather do you mean the idea that we are one society and should share the burden of past discrimination towards less fortunate kids?... PC "blather" is about the future...where all schools are good schools for all kids.

So which is it--we're supposed to sacrifice our own children's needs for those less fortunate, or we should pretend that all schools are good for all kids (and the teachers are unicorns and the playground is full of rainbows to climb on)?

One could say it's irrational and unfounded fears that drive parents into private school and the HCC.
Or one could say what drives parents into private or HCC are things like academic experience and evidence that something isn't working for their child; teacher recommendations to find a more appropriate program; social-emotional-behavioral problems that are getting worse; feelings of isolation; having experienced bullying; inadequate compliance with IEPs and 504 plans; the never-ending dramas over splits and reassignments and curricula and transportation and services and pathways and such; and so on. Making parents out to be irrational may serve to make your point, but unfortunately it's not true. It also doesn't get us any further along in discussing this issue.

Half Full (v.1)

Anonymous said...

"Amen to that (but also keeping in mind white privilege)."
Agreed Melissa. That is real and valid. Which is also why I also stated if in a room all those HC haters (& probably HC supporters as well) would make assumptions about that white kid's background". It can work both ways to the kids benefit and also even detriment in certain situations.
But as you have also mentioned there is all sorts of privilege as well we don't talk about as much. This kid also has a physical disability. Socioeconomics and education are also really huge privileges that can have multi generational consequences.

Also, contrary to what US history had traditionally taught, the oppressive British class system in England was not left in England when the colonists arrived in America. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/06/22/books/review-white-trash-ruminates-on-an-american-underclass.html

I would also argue that the most marginalized among us often don't have their stories widely told. History is wide subject. Unless you are a historican in a University, or a geneologist many people may even be unfamiliar with their own family histories.

Poverty affects all

Melissa Westbrook said...

Poverty affects all, I have watched several genealogy shows and I am astonished at the number of famous people who know very little about even their own grandparents' backgrounds.