Why I Support School Choice For Minority Students

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Let me preface my position on public schools by saying that I am a not a Republican, but on this particular issue I agree with theIr position on education. School choice is the parental option to chose between a public or any private schools for underprivileged students. I think it’s imperative to acknowledge that I understand purpose of public schools, and the reasoning for creating one. These institutions of learning ( a term I use loosely) were created to give all students the chance to receive an education, which is legally offered to all students. Ideally, public education was a socially correct idea, but now it operates in futility. Frankly put, public education has become a disaster.

Urban education is the bane of many poor minority students existence. There is no need in denying this a national truth. If you go to any inner city across the United States, you
Can’t help but notice a glaring commonality. All of public schools are in dire straits. For black public high students nationally, it has been reported that only 66 percent of the student population graduates with in the 4 year track. This is significant considering the disparities to other races; Asians (93%), whites (83%) and Hispanics (71%).

Given these statistics, we have a festering problem, but it is affecting a particular demographic of people- black youth. Recent studies show that only 50 percent of black youth graduate, which is a profound and disappointing number in itself. Many of these black young men attend these dysfunctional public schools, where failure is accepted. This number is alarming but one must ask themselves what factors led to this failure of the public education system for minorities.

School violence has become a serious problem in many urban schools. The threat of harm to a student deters the learning process, and also leads to an inflation in violence. Many students from these schools live in rivaling neighborhoods, as result, the beef and violence spills over to the school. Lack of educational resources are also a liability which hinders public education. A student once told me that they had a textbook where George Bush was listed as the current President. It is exactly these sort of barriers which impede student development and consciousness.

Detractors argue against private education because it undermines public education, and it discriminates against certain kind of students. Maybe public education needs to be under minded because it has been unsuccessful.

Shouldn’t all students have the opportunities to learn and succeed in a environment which challenges the student? It’s clear that public education system is hurting are young black children. Many community organizers, professors & activist speaks of the ” education-prison pipeline,” the notion that inadequate education in urban schools has a direct correlation with likelihood of imprisonment. Some argue that public education should better funded and to an extent I agree, but we have to deal with the reality that these inferior schools are causing urban decay right NOW.

The fact of the matter is private institutions of education of education have a better reputation of education youth and preparing them for college. They foster a safe environment that reinforce a commitment to education, and personal growth. Moreover, private schools simply have superior educational resources that can mold academic excellence in students.

School choice gives the parent the discretion to chose a school that will prepare the child for the “real world.” It’s hypocritical in my opinion for many on the left to tout the usefulness of public education while they send their children to elite private schools. President Obama sends his kids to private school, Sidwell & Friends to be exact. Shouldn’t other D.C children receive the same opportunity? As a moderate leftist, I have come to the conclusion that I’m willing to support a n unpopular position on school choice. Because long after this read, many minority children will be left to fend for themselves in the horrid schools. These voucher programs worked in Cleveland, Ohio; a city that was notorious for their dismal public school performance. The Supreme Court solidified the legality of the program in the controversial court case Zelman v. Simmons-Harris. Which leaves the school vouchers programs to the state legislatures to approve if they passed the Supreme Court Establishment Clause test. So if there has been a blueprint of success in one urban area, other inner city school districts should follow suit, and deviate from party politics.

My opinion is not predicated on politics, but what I have seen in the school districts. The end result of public school education. I’ll leave you with this question, if this were your child stuck in a crumbling school, what would you do in the situation?

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