Stop blaming black parents for underachieving kids

Improving black students’ learning doesn’t “start at home.”

Mayors, teachers unions, and news commentators have boiled down the academic achievement gap between white and black students to one root cause: parents. Even black leaders and barbershop chatter target “lazy parents” for academic failure in their communities, dismissing the complex web of obstacles that assault urban students daily. In 2011, then-New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg exemplified this thinking by saying, “Unfortunately, there are some parents who…never had a formal education and they don’t understand the value of an education.” Earlier this year, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette columnist Tony Norman diagnosed that city’s public schools’ chief problem: the lack of “active, radical involvement of every parent.” And even President Obama rued last week that in some black communities, gaining education is viewed as “acting white.”

Clearly, there is widespread belief that black parents don’t value education. The default opinion has become “it’s the parents” — not the governance, the curriculum, the instruction, the policy, nor the lack of resources — that create problems in urban schools. That’s wrong. Everyday actions continuously contradict the idea that low-income black families don’t care about their children’s schooling, with parents battling against limited resources to access better educations than their circumstances would otherwise afford their children.

In New Orleans this month, hundreds of families waited in the heat for hours in hopes of getting their children into their favorite schools. New Orleans’ unique decentralized education system is comprised largely of charter schools and assigns students through a computerized matching system. Parents unhappy with their child’s assignment must request a different school in person at an enrollment center, with requests granted on a first-come, first-served basis. This year, changes were made to the timing and location for parents to request changes. A long line began forming at the center at 6 a.m. By 9:45 a.m., it stretched around the block. By 12:45 p.m., officials stopped giving out numbers because they didn’t have enough staff to meet with every parent.

Research backs up the anecdotal evidence. Rice University’s Kinder Institute for Urban Research recently found that African Americans are most likely to value a post-secondary education in becoming successful, at 90 percent, followed by Asians and Latinos. Whites, at 64 percent, were least likely to believe higher education is necessary for success.


Students take take a test at New Orleans school. Showing their commitment to education, black families stood in line for hours to enroll their children in choice schools this month. (Photo by Edmund D. Fountain for The Washington Post)
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When judging black families’ commitment to education, many are confusing will with way. These parents have the will to provide quality schooling for their children, but often, they lack the way: the social capital, the money and the access to elite institutions. There is a difference between valuing an education and having the resources to tap that value.

A study released this month found 26 percent of ACT-tested students were college-ready in all four subject areas. Among low-income students, college-readiness dropped to just 11 percent. The study determined that it was poverty, not motivation or attitudes, that contributed to the lower performance. “Nearly all ACT-tested students from low-income families in the United States aspire to go to college — at an even higher rate than students overall — but many lack the academic preparation to reach this goal,” the ACT noted.

Privileged parents hold onto the false notion that their children’s progress comes from thrift, dedication and hard work — not from the money their parents made. Our assumption that “poverty doesn’t matter” and insistence on blaming black families’ perceived disinterest in education for their children’s underachievement simply reflects our negative attitudes towards poor, brown people and deflects our responsibility to address the real root problems of the achievement gap. Our negative attitudes about poor people keep us from providing the best services and schools to low-income families.

This thinking hurts not only children, but entire communities. Low expectations extend beyond the classroom into homes and neighborhoods. The greatest tragedy of the New Orleans school enrollment fiasco isn’t just that parents had to wait in long lines. It’s that the school district assumed parents wouldn’t show up. Officials assumed grandma wouldn’t be there before dawn. They assumed Ma wouldn’t take off work with child in tow. This is a sign of deficit thinking — the practice of making decisions based on negative assumptions about particular socioeconomic, racial and ethnic groups. The enrollment center was understaffed because officials assumed applying for school wouldn’t demand a larger venue, like the Mercedes Benz Superdome. An aside: The Superdome hosts the Urban League of Greater New Orleans’ annual Schools Expo.

When it comes to providing a better education for black children from low-income families, I worry less about poor folks’ abilities to wait in long lines and more about the school policies, the city halls, the newspaper columns and the barbershops that are plagued with deficit thinking.

Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/posteverything/wp/2014/07/30/stop-blaming-black-parents-for-underachieving-kids/

 

 

100 Percent of Urban Prep Seniors College-Bound

Seniors have been awarded more than $6 million in scholarships and grants

Urban Prep Academy is continuing its record of success.

For the last three years, all graduation seniors from the charter school’s Englewood campus have been college bound. This year, the inaugural graduating class of the West Campus has  accomplished the same goal.

In all, 167 seniors, all African American males, have been accepted to a four-year college or university.

“What this 100 percent proves beyond a doubt is that it need not be the exception but it should be the expectation for every child in the city of Chicago,” Mayor Rahm Emanuel said at a ceremony where the final students exchanged their red uniform neckties with the red-and-gold striped ones that signify their college-bound status.

Urban Prep founder Tim King said he was exceedingly proud of the young men.

“It’s really heartwarming. It’s really an inspiration,” said Tim King. “These guys are an inspiration to all of us because they show you what can happen when you really work hard and do the right thing. I feel great. There are no words to describe how powerful and wonderful it is to be a part of Urban Prep.”

Urban Prep also announced a $150,000 donation from Citi Foundation to support the academy’s  Alumni Affairs Program, which supports roughly 300 graduates enrolled in college.

“To me, it’s a place that wants to see more young black men grow and mature into men and be successful in life,” senior Malik Battle said of Urban Prep.

Battle said he’ll be attending Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA. in the fall, studying business administration and sociology.

“Urban Prep cares,” he said.

Urban Prep Academies, founded in 2002 by King and a group of African American leaders, will host commencement exercises for this year’s graduating seniors on June 7, 2013 at the UIC Forum.

White Privilege & White Victimization Narrative

CNN Panelist Slams White Privilege Men’s Recent Mass Killings

 

CNN panelist David Sirota addresses the double standard applied to mass killings. Sirota suggests that if the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooter had been an African American or Arabic, the conversation going on across the country would be different. Sirota argues that he is, “not saying we should racially profile white guys,” but his observation does bring up an interesting point for discussion.

Source: http://voice4america.com/articles/2012/12/27/cnn-panelist-slams-white-privilege-mens-recent-mass-killings.html#ixzz2GJML2Dve

The Reduction of Black Unemployment

Black Business Hiring can Reduce Black Unemployment

Black Business Hiring can Reduce Black Unemployment

by

 One of the most effective strategies for reducing black unemployment is to support black-owned businesses. This is because two out of every three workers employed in those businesses are black. In fact, black businesses can achieve employment outcomes that economic growth policy cannot.

This post examines hiring in African American-owned businesses as a strategy to reduce the high rate of black unemployment.

What do we know?

In a previous post entitled, For Unemployed Blacks, Growth is not Enough, three observations were made about black unemployment:

1.  The national burden of unemployment falls heaviest upon blacks.

2.  Economic growth is essential, but by itself, growth is not enough to alleviate high rates of black unemployment.

3.  Incremental policy changes such as job-training programs are not likely to make a significant difference.

Currently the unemployment rate is 8.2%, but the rate for African-Americans is 14.0%, while among whites, it is 7.3%. An astounding 40.5% of black teenagers is unemployed. One key conclusion is this; even if the economy were to grow rapidly, black unemployment would still not be reduced significantly.

Consider this fact. Today GDP growth is 3%, and black unemployment is 14%. The best performance of the economy in the last decade occurred in the fourth quarter of 2003.  During the period, GDP grew at 6.7%, which is more than twice the current rate. Nevertheless, the unemployment rate for blacks still averaged 10.6%. Conclusion – growth is not enough!

So what can be done?

black-economy

One solution is to look to the potential of African-American businesses. The last census survey of small businesses, (the Survey of Business Owners conducted in 2007) determined African Americans owned 1.9 million small businesses. This represented 7.1% of the nation’s 27 million businesses. Furthermore, businesses owned by blacks employed 921,032 workers.

In 2007, the Gazelle Index conducted a national random survey of 350 CEOs of African-American owned businesses. The survey had a margin of error of 5%. The survey determined that 64% of employees in black-owned businesses were black. This means those businesses employed 589,460 workers in 2007.

Think of it this way. Today, there are 2.5 million unemployed black workers. As such, African American-owned businesses are capable of employing 23% or more of them. Furthermore, as these businesses grow and their employment capacity increases, two out of every three workers hired will be Black.

Conclusion – one of the most effective strategies for lowering black unemployment is to increase support for black businesses.

Why support black businesses?

The latest Gazelle Index national survey (conducted in the 4th quarter of 2011) found 46.9% of African-American owned businesses cut their workforce in response to the “Great Recession” and 22.5% decreased employment by 50% or more.

Black businesses located in the West were hardest hit by the recession; 34.6% of businesses in the West cut their workforce by 50% or more, while 25.0% in the Northeast, 23.7% in the South, and 17.9% in the Midwest did so.

On the positive side, the survey found a larger percentage of black CEOs will add workers in 2012 than the CEOs of any other racial or ethnic group. Specifically, 37.4% will add employees while only 15% will cut. Among whites, 23.5% will add workers and 11.2% will cut. Finally, 20.0% of Latinos will add workers while 17.6% will cut.

The industries where black businesses will do the most hiring are as follows: Information Technology, 52.9% of businesses will hire; Construction, 50%; Management and Administrative Services, 42.2%; Health Care and Education, 38.5%; Retail Trades 33.3%. Industries where CEO will cut include Transportation and Warehousing, and Professional and Technical Services.

Currently Congress is assisting small businesses as an employment priority. If the government targeted more aid to black-owned businesses, those firms would be able to reduce black unemployment in a way that growth policy cannot.

Source: http://www.blackeconomicdevelopment.com/black-business-hiring-can-reduce-black-unemployment/

Educated Black People Love …

Stuff Educated Black People Like

Everything You’ve Ever Wanted To Know About EBP

#27 Sheer Pantyhose and Patterned Tights

#27 Sheer Pantyhose and Patterned Tights

Whether you are an attorney, doctor, or upwardly mobile socialite, you make sure that whatever you are wearing out looks good on you.  From the top of your head to the bottom of your feet, your look shows everyone what strata of the socio-economic ladder you belong too.  So you make sure your wig is tight, your dress is right, and your legs are hard to miss.  So you never wear an outfit without… [Read more]


#26 Naming Their Children

#26 Naming Their Children

test 1We Educated Black People LOVE to give our children names that show that “we’ve arrived!” Names that won’t leave the teacher guessing where the accent should be.  Names that don’t necessarily reveal the child’s race like Nina(often times followed by Simone), Melanie, Noah(many are huge fans), Drew, Aiden, Nile and Gavin.  Gone is the day where Shaquan, De’Ja-nae and LaPonicah… [Read more]


#25 Gated Communities

#25 Gated Communities

After moving to Atlanta in droves, EBP will discover their new found love and desire for gated communities. The average EBP is very familiar with gated communities; whether they grew up with a gate at the front of their neighborhood or went to an HBCU such as Hampton or Howard University that was equipped with a security guard as well. Not only is this neighborhood feature the pièce de résistance… [Read more]


#24 Foreign Cars

#24 Foreign Cars

Educated Black People like foreign cars. Something about the undergraduate degree just makes American made cars inadequate. Now, the type of B.A. determines where the foreign car is from. Any Liberal Arts degree is automatically a Japanese Import (with a heavy affinity towards the Honda Accord). Science or engineering degrees are not as simple. Sometimes these degrees can go for “near luxury”brands… [Read more]


#23 Deck Shoes

#23 Deck Shoes

EBPs love to be “the exception.” There is no better way to separate themselves from regular BP, than by an EBP’s choice of footwear. The deck shoe or boating shoe is very popular in the EBP community. Most EBP prefer the Sperry brand of deck shoe. EBPs love wearing their deck shoes with shorts, khakis, or seersucker pants. The shoes complete the ultimate EBP weekend look. However, this… [Read more]


#22 Passing the BAR

#22 Passing the BAR

For those EBP who manage to survive law school, graduation comes with feelings of mixed emotions. Of course they are happy to be done with the 3 year ass whipping that is law school, but are also dreading the preparation to study for the Bar exam. During the time when an EBP is studying for the Bar, they will not be visible to their social circle, unless it consists of other EBP studying for the Bar…. [Read more]


#21 Hiding Their Drama

#21 Hiding Their Drama

EBP have the same problems as UEBP or WP. However, EBP take pride in hiding their drama from friends or co-workers. By allowing their drama to be brought into public light, EBP appear nothing more than the UEBP stereotypes portrayed by the media. Whether it be man problems, problems at work or catty-chick stuff; EBP will go to great lengths to protect their polished EBP public appearance. For there… [Read more]


#20 Wine & Cheese Affairs

#20 Wine & Cheese Affairs

If you are an EBP, chances are you have attended a wine and cheese affair. It all starts with an invitation. This will not be a phone call, text or paper invitation. It will be an Evite; other methods of invitation are unacceptable for EBP. Only real EBP know what an Evite is. Your host will make the event as discreet as possible by only inviting a select few. The Evite will usually indicate that the… [Read more]


#19 Displaying Photographs

#19 Displaying Photographs

Whenever someone visits the home or office of an EBP, they will notice that photographs are usually displayed. While this is a normal practice for all races, EBP do things a little differently. At first glance one will notice the pictures of family members; then, it will be spotted, perhaps in its own distinctive frame. It is a picture of your host shaking hands or in a casual pose with a celebrity…. [Read more]


#18 MEGA Churches

#18 MEGA Churches

Educated Black People like MegaChurches. There’s something about these churches that draw EBP in large numbers. The Pastors/Reverends/Bishops at the Mega Churches usually have advanced degrees in Divinity called a Doctor of Divinity. These church leaders usually use words with several syllables – something that EBP love. An example of these words would be: multiplicity, bewildered, extravagance,… [Read more]


#17 Spas

#17 Spas

Educated Black People like spas. There are many reasons why EBP like spas, but the main reason is that they offer exclusivity – the one thing an EBP constantly craves. They can make appointments, arrive 5 minutes early and be worked on immediately. An EBP would not be caught dead in a typical(nobody speaks English) nail salon(shop) to get a manicure and/or pedicure; those are the only services… [Read more]


#16 Howard University

#16 Howard University

For a large number of potential EBP in high school, Howard University is their Mecca. Throughout the long selection process, Howard is viewed in the same light as a move to Atlanta. If the potential EBP is lucky enough, they will be invited to a HU “College Night” where alumni will come to speak about the greatness of Howard. The alum will probably be dressed in a bow tie and tweed jacket, and… [Read more]


#15 Facebook (Pre-2005)

#15 Facebook (Pre-2005)

Educated Black People Like Facebook. This is the social networking site of choice for most EBP. Not the Facebook of today, but the Facebook, pre-2005, when only college students aka “educated people” could join and there weren’t all those new applications to add to your profile. In the good old days, one had to have a valid college email address to join, now “everyone can join”. The reason… [Read more]


#14 Correcting Others

#14 Correcting Others

Educated Black People Like correcting others. It does not matter the topic or situation, an EBP will never miss an opportunity to correct someone else. Hell, they’ll probably correct this post. An EBP will stop at nothing to show off their so called “educated” status. Whether it be correcting a co-worker on a point of information, or telling their 90 year old grandmother that it’s pronounced… [Read more]


#13 Oprah

#13 Oprah

EBP like Oprah. She has an exceptional ability that most other EBP wish they had – the ability to hold the attention of people and make them do, like, or buy just about anything. Oprah is educated and pulled herself up from nothing to be one of the most notable names in the world. EBP are constantly fighting at work or any place else to get ahead and/or be heard, while Oprah can tell white people… [Read more]


#12 Weddings

#12 Weddings

EBP like weddings. They enjoy the Pomp and Circumstance that comes along with an EBP wedding; an invitation only affair, filled with other EBP. Making weddings exclusive events are a favorite of EBP. Long gone are the days of a traditional church wedding. The advanced EBP now enjoy “destination weddings”. They can prevent the undesirables from attending because they usually cannot afford it and… [Read more]


#11 Jazz

#11 Jazz

One will only need to be in the company of an EBP for a short time before they hear about the EBPs love for jazz. Jazz has the uncanny ability of touching an EBP’s inner soul and heart, and making them feel them feel the pains and problems of the past. It is also the preferred date, as it shows true sophistication and understanding, while always impressing the ladies. EBPs feel like that they cannot… [Read more]


#10 Getting Dressed Up

#10 Getting Dressed Up

Educated Black People like getting dressed up. No matter the event or time of day, EBP will over-dress. EBP will spend half of their salary, maybe more, on a new outfit for a party, family reunion, or even a school play. Even if the event is casual, an educated black male will usually wear a necktie, maybe a suit, if its after 5 p.m. When considering to over-dress, the EBP will think about who will… [Read more]


#9 First Fridays

#9 First Fridays

Today is a special day in the hearts of Educated Black People, for it’s their favorite day of the month: FIRST FRIDAY! Unlike uneducated black people and their love affair with the 1st and 15th of every month, educated Black People wait in anticipation for the First Friday. This is the day that upscale events are held so educated black people can mingle among others of their social ilk. These events… [Read more]


#8 Talking About Uneducated Black People

#8 Talking About Uneducated Black People

Besides themselves, EBP like talking about uneducated Blacks who disgrace their race. Most EBP hate those Blacks who are loud in public and draw unnecessary attention to themselves. EBP especially get embarrassed when they are out with their white friends and they run into an uneducated Black person. They usually want to run over and slap the uneducated Black in order to stop whatever stupid behavior… [Read more]


#7 Barack Obama

#7 Barack Obama

Educated Black People Like Barack Obama, but it’s not for the reasons you think. Yes, Obama is an Educated Black Person, so of course we LOVE him. However, there are other reasons educated blacks like the Senator from Illinois. Another reason is that he’s the first Black person to run for public office without going all Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson on America. Obama has not once gotten the NAACP… [Read more]


#6 Town Homes

#6 Town Homes

Educated Black people Like town homes. When an educated Black person gets a new job upon graduation, they usually purchase a town home. This is a symbol of status. It’s the convenience of a starter home without the burden of doing yard work. In places like New York, most educated Blacks will purchase a brownstone. A town home is a symbol of status because it shows the world that they have “made… [Read more]


#5 Advanced Degrees

#5 Advanced Degrees

Educated Black people like advanced degrees. What better way to show that you are educated than to get a slew of degrees to prove it! Educated Black people typically like to obtain their advanced degrees from universities that they find to be reputable. They have nothing against University of Phoenix, but something just doesn’t seem quite right about that place. It reminds them of those “degree… [Read more]


#4 Poetry Slams

#4 Poetry Slams

Educated Black People LOVE poetry slams. Poetry slams are events where either professional poets or audience members get up and recite original poems, songs and speeches. Educated black people are large attendees of these “slams” because we believe that this form of entertainment is much better then going to a bar, listening to music, enjoying a long walk, or anything else that uncultured people… [Read more]


#3 Baked Chicken

#3 Baked Chicken

We’ve all heard the joke that all black people love fried chicken. That’s not true. EVERYBODY loves fried chicken – white or black. It’s even on the buffet at Chinese restaurants! So let’s just scratch that idea right now. Educated Black People have a more sophisticated taste. We like BAKED CHICKEN. Some even go so far as to use lemon pepper seasonings, but this is only for the upper… [Read more]


#2 Neo Soul

#2 Neo Soul

Educated Black people like Neo Soul. For those of you who don’t know what this genre of music is about, I have included a short description. Neo soul (also known as nu soul) is a music genre and an umbrella term for current soul music. The music is usually a hybrid of 1970s-influenced soul music with influences from jazz, funk, hip hop house music. The term neo soul was originated by Kedar Massenburg… [Read more]


#1 Fraternities and Sororities

#1 Fraternities and Sororities

Educated Black people like to talk about which fraternity (also called a ”frat”) or sorority they pledged in college. Some of them even go to college with the intent to pledge a Greek lettered organization, then drop out of school. Unlike predominately white fraternities or sororities, these Black Greek letter organizations (or “BGLOs”) are for life. Many members wear Greek paraphernalia… [Read more]

Youth Employment is at Its Lowest Level Since World War II

 

Worst Since World War II: 50% Unemployment: Over Six Million Teens and Young Adults Are Out of Work and Not In School

Amid a worsening fiscal crisis, a crumbling economy, and the destruction of over 40% of America’s wealth in just the last few years, it should be quite clear that this is no ordinary recession. In fact, with progressively dwindling job opportunities, a long-term downward trend in real estate prices, and the near doubling of participation in emergency benefits programs like food stamps and disability, one could make the argument that the United States is smack-dab in the middle of the next Great Depression.

The notion that we are potentially facing a decades-long paradigm shift which threatens to alter the very fabric of American life is becoming a stark reality  for many, especially America’s younger generations who, according to a new report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation, are experiencing the highest jobless rates since at least World War II:

Forty years ago, a teenager leaving high school — with or without a diploma — could find a job in a local factory. Twenty years ago, even as manufacturing jobs moved offshore, young people could still gain a foothold in the workforce through neighborhood stores and restaurants. Amid the housing boom of the past decade, youth with some training could find a career track in the construction field. But today — with millions of jobs lost and experienced workers scrambling for every available position — America’s young people stand last in line for jobs.

Youth employment is at its lowest level since World War II; only about half of young people ages 16 to 24 held jobs in 2011. Among the teens in that group, only 1 in 4 is now employed, compared to 46 percent in 2000.

Overall, 6.5 million people ages 16 to 24 are both out of school and out of work, statistics that suggest dire consequences for financial stability and employment prospects in that population.

More and more doors are closing for these young people. Entry-level jobs at fast-food restaurants and clothing stores
that high school dropouts once could depend on to start their careers now go to older workers with better experience and credentials. It often takes a GED to get a job flipping hamburgers. Even some with college degrees are having trouble finding
work.

The employment rate for youth ages 16 to 19 dropped precipitously — down 42 percent since 2000. More youth than ever — 2.2 million teenagers and 4.3 million young adults ages 20 to 24 — are neither in school nor working.

Additionally, 21 percent — 1.4 million — of those young people out of school and out of work are young parents who must take care of their own needs and those of their children.

In this report, we describe them as disconnected youth. The term encompasses diverse groups, ranging from the 16-year-old who just dropped out of high school and is not working to the 21-year-old parent who has a high school degree and has been looking for work for a long time. They live at home in urban, suburban or rural communities.

The prospects for the Millennial Generation, who once enjoyed the seemingly never ending prosperity of McMansions, high-end technology and brand name apparel provided by their debt-laden parents, are rapidly disappearing.

The most challenging jobs market since the last Great Depression, coupled with an inability to acquire an education and trade skills due to tightened student loan requirements, yields an untenable situation for America’s youth. Combine this with the fact that most of these kids have or will soon be having kids, and you have tens of millions more Americans added to already overburdened government safety nets.

Reality television shows and government education convinced many teens and young adults that they would enjoy a carefree life of riches and luxury.

Never would they have even entertained the idea they would instead be plagued with a lifetime of misery, poverty and government dependence.

It’s a hard-knocks life, and it’s about to get a whole heck of a lot worse for a lot of people.

Author: Mac Slavo
Date: December 4th, 2012
Website: www.SHTFplan.com

Copyright Information: Copyright SHTFplan and Mac Slavo. This content may be freely reproduced in full or in part in digital form with full attribution to the author and a link to http://www.shtfplan.com. Please contact us for permission to reproduce this content in other media formats.

Is Education Important Anymore?

“… you can’t become president without having a clear stance on tax policy, gay marriage, abolition, military diplomacy or the free market. Yet, a clear and articulate stance on education, whether it may be, is simply not a prerequisite for public office. As much scrutiny as we give to cabinet appointments, almost no one cares about who becomes secretary of education.”

– Marc Lamont Hill

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