Sunday, February 7, 2010

New York School Closings: NAACP Teachers Protest: Keeping Kids Down and Stupid

Some New York City school teachers have filed a lawsuit to keep 19 low-performing New York City schools alive. Can you believe that? NINETEEN! The  NAACP has joined the lawsuit.

One New York report says "thousands" came out to protest the closings. I wonder when the last time was that "thousands" turned out for Parent-Teacher meetings? Such energy and passion should have been visible far before closings began to be a reality.

New York City School Closings

A panel under the direction of Mayor Bloomberg says the schools are "failing," and they have shown "chronically poor results." The Number 1 concern of the parents with children attending these schools, is surely, to get their kids into decent schools, and when the schools are not decent, the parents should be raising hell. Raising hell, and then raising hell again until the school becomes, at least, adequate.

Is the agenda of the NAACP to keep kids down and stupid? Of those protesting, how about telling how you plan to turn the school around, now that you've already that you've known for sometime you could be shutdown if you did not up-the-performance.

Here's a comment from a high school student about the closing:
Felicia Henry, 17, a senior and the student body president at Paul Robeson, said at the very least she learned an important civics lesson. “At the end of the day, I fought to keep Paul Robeson open,” she said. “Even if it doesn’t sway the decision, I stood up for something I believe in. I can be proud of myself.”
What Miss Henry "learned" is that someone in the city is looking out for her welfare.

One day, Henry may be grateful that the schools were closed. I'm assuming these kids will be going to other, better schools. What if the city did nothing? What about younger siblings of Henry, if any? Surely she doesn't want her younger brothers and sisters attending failing schools. I'm still in a state of disbelief: "thousands" protest better schools? These parents should be ashamed.

Ponder this scenario:
Imagine if 20 years ago on the south side of Chicago two thousand low-income, predominantly African-American families were given an opportunity to take their children out of failing and violent schools and send them to a school where they had a chance to graduate and attend college.

What if this program had numerous studies that showed the students within the program were making statistically significant gains in reading? What if the program was so wildly popular that for every one scholarship that was awarded, there were four applicants?

And then, what if powerful politicians, well-funded by special interests, decided to eliminate the program that gave so many low-income minority students hope for a brighter future? Would Community Organizer Barack Obama stand with the powerful politicians who ended the program or the students and families whose lives were put in the political crosshairs of day-to-day partisanship?

It’s safe to assume that Community Organizer Obama would be on the front lines, fighting with the parents and standing with the kids.

Today, Community Organizer Obama is President Obama, and now he and his colleagues Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Jose Serrano (D-NY) are the powerful politicians, well-funded by special interests, that are playing a political game with the lives of 1,700 low-income families in Washington, D.C.

Is their anything worse than Blacks embracing poor education, and especially Black leaders? Barack Obama, our first Black President, opposes school vouchers.
For advocates of school choice, the fact that Obama sends his own children to a private school is relevant to the school choice debate.
“That’s not unusual. Loads of people opposed to school choice send their own kids to private school,” said Dick Komer, senior litigation attorney for the Institute for Justice, which supports school vouchers.

“Wealthy people like Obama have school choice,” Komer told “This is garden variety hypocrisy.”
Right after taking office, Obama sanctioned the DC school voucher program for those already in the system, but allows no new students to sign-up. The program is over in Washington D.C.

I am sick of hearing parents and teachers complain without taking the time to organize strong, strong protests to get better educations for their children. I would love to hear from teachers who know their textbooks are revisionist history, weak and just flat-out wrong. We know this is often the case. How often do we hear a teacher saying it? How many parents are too busy to make their children responsible for learning. How many Americans think money is the answer? It has never been the answer. Learning is the answer. Money will not make the students show up for class. It won't make them crack a book. Honestly, I am sick of it.

©2007-2012copyrightMaggie M. Thornton