I’ve learned as a teacher in the public education system that since the desegregation of public schools, colored kids have been the face of public education failure. Because Black and brown kids are the face of failure, systemically they are also the targets of educational funding vultures.
Educational funding vultures are the pimps of public schools.
They take on many forms and positions and are most notably given the task to guard the gates. This guarding is through people, organizations, and communities that block the advancement of colored people through education.
EdLanta recently published an article regarding data showing how students are doing since the pandemic hit. Of course, it proves what we already knew to be true and what’s happening in public education.
- Black and brown children are still being measured by racially biased IQ tests and curriculum.
- White children, in particular, are advancing more than other students.
- Most public schools are still teaching to standards based on high stakes testing.
Target data from the Fordham Institute’s recent study on student performance reflects that Black and brown children are performing significantly lower than white students. In addition, Atlanta’s public school system is still majority Black and brown students. So while the city celebrates the improvements in graduation rates that have moved up from recent years, why is the academic performance data so drastically different?
Following the money trail and connecting the data dots reflects how public schools are still pimping Black and brown kids. Per the report, when student achievement data is broken down by students served, white students rank highest followed by Black students, and hispanic students come in drastically after both groups.
However, for a large percentage of school districts to be Title I or economically disadvantaged, those students ranked 45th in academic progress.
For Black and brown kids in public schools this is the data point that reflects that our children are still being pimped.
Last week, my students and I listened to online legislative sessions on educational bills. The number one line every politician says is that there is enough money available to make progress happen.
But for who? We’ve seen the racial disparities present day from white parents outraged about masks mandates and culturally inclusive curriculum and now there are talks of banning MLK and Black History Month.
All the while, Black and brown parents are at school board meetings, on social media, at schools, writing letters, attending 50 meetings a week and still no movement on the equity needed in funding, resources, and supporting staff in order for Black and brown children to get what they need academically, socially, and emotionally.
Pimping children means the money and resources that should be going to every child isn’t getting to that child.
In most cases, the data indicates how Black and brown children are being failed. Therefore, if schools are getting millions of dollars to improve schools and academic outcomes, why are white students who don’t largely fall in failing categories in public education seem to continue leading a wide gap of learning disparity and achievement?
Every dollar matters when it comes to educating children.
This is why parents want to ensure their dollars are being used in schools within their community they chose to attend.
School choice is an outlet that parents in Georgia who are seeking to simply get the innovation in educational practices and results desired for their student. However, public education still has grave issues with how teachers are supported and fidelity of special education programming.
Let’s get into the data points on school choice, and how it’s more than just a saving grace for Black and brown families in Georgia.
Most importantly, for advocates of public education, comment and let us know your thoughts on the data points and what actions you believe are needed to help improve the academic outcomes of children of color.
Jason has worked in education for over 15 years as a teacher, blogger and community advocate. He speaks and writes primarily about the need to improve education for Black boys, particularly increasing the number of Black male educators in schools. In addition to blogging here at EdLanta, Jason is also a featured writer at Education Post.