Meltdown

Who is to blame for “an education meltdown within the black community,” Walter Williams asks in the Washington Times. It’s not racial discrimination, he answers.

Where black education is the very worst, often the city mayor is black, the city council is black-dominated and often the school superintendent is black, as well as most of the principals and teachers. And Democrats have run the cities for decades.

. . . There’s enough blame for this sorry state of affairs for all participants to share: students who are hostile and alien to the education process, parents who don’t care, teachers who are incompetent or have been beaten down by the system, and administrators who sanction unwarranted promotions and fraudulent diplomas that attest a student has mastered 12th-grade material when in fact he hasn’t mastered sixth- or seventh-grade material.

. . . No one can solve the educational problems that black people confront except black people themselves.

Williams advocates vouchers or tuition tax credits to let as many black students as possible “escape from rotten schools.”

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Comments

  1. Walter E. Wallis says:

    Does anyone have information on the acadmic performance of segregated schools?

  2. Mr. Williams is wrong when he asserts, “The problem is summoning the will.”

    The will exists, there just isn’t much in the way of a direction for that will to take most people.

    The recognition that there are shortcomings in the public education system has been with us for a while. The understanding that there are solutions other then those touted by advocates for the current public education system is just starting to dawn.

  3. Indigo Warrior says:

    Escaping from rotten schools is easy enough. Escaping from rotten families and communities is not. There will be no real improvement until the inner-city black communities recognize and deal with this. Alternatives to “the current public education system” can only help, and certainly not hurt, but they are only the first step.

  4. Andy Freeman says:

    > Escaping from rotten schools is easy enough.

    Really? Do tell. And then explain why so few parents figure it out.

  5. Indigo Warrior says:

    >> Escaping from rotten schools is easy enough.

    Compared to escaping from rotten families and communities.

  6. Andy Freeman says:

    Lots of people in crappy communities have okay to good families. So, they’re half-way through the problem that IW thinks is harder than escaping bad schools.

    How do they escape bad schools?

    Note: “get rich” isn’t one of their options.

  7. Indigo Warrior says:

    Lots of people in crappy communities have okay to good families. So, they’re half-way through the problem that IW thinks is harder than escaping bad schools.

    Being not in a bad family removes the problem of having to escape.

    How do they escape bad schools?

    They drop out. If the school is bad enough, there is no advantage, and even considerable disadvantage, in staying. There are alternatives, and not all of them require great wealth. Not all of them are expensive private schools. Books by Grace Llewellyn, such as “The Teenage Liberation Handbook”, explore such alternatives.

  8. Andy Freeman says:

    As bad as inner city public schools are, I suspect that they’re better than nothing. And, while the diploma may be next to meaningless, it’s better than nothing. (For example, it signals that the person showed up occasionally. A drop out may, or may not, have that capability.)

  9. I wonder whether they’re better then nothing.

    If there was nothing then parents would, as parents in similar situations have done at many times and in many places, create their own schools. I suspect that such schools wouldn’t be fertile ground for every passing edu-fad and, when the second, third and fourth parent-created schools opened up wouldn’t be able to rest on its laurels.

    I just find it difficult to believe that any parent, rich or poor, would allow their child to graduate from high school as an illiterate if they had a choice.

    As it is, most of these parents have to accept whatever the school district provides and have little in the way of options if the school district, along with failing their duty to educate, also instills a lifelong loathing of education. I think that qualifies as worse then nothing.