Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Re-Segregation in Schools

"Wherever you are - be all there." - Jim Elliot

"Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested." - Francis Bacon, 1625 

Children, I want you all to put on your clean dresses and freshly-pressed suits, because we're going to have a very important visitor arriving here on this blog rather soon. I will be going away for a little bit so that I won't be cluttering up the house while she is here. I want you all to be on your very best behavior. If you do as I ask, I will bake you a special treat.

Who is this visitor, you ask? She is an agent who has expressed interest in The Clockwork Experiment. I may or may not actually stop posting (most likely not-- I could never leave you dear ones for very long, could I? I mean, take a look at the archives on the right). However, the special treat is not a lie, unlike the cake. (Portal reference, anyone?) At least, it's solid truth for those of you in my writing group-- assuming I remember to bake it, that is.

Now, I could write a post in all capital letters about how exciting that is (and believe me, it's easily exciting enough to write one in THE LARGEST FONT SIZE), but I have more interesting things to be discussing, so let us move on to those.

Wow, this is coming out really formal other than the parenthesized parts, isn't it? I'll have to make up for it some other time.

As some of you may or may not know, my county's school system was mocked on the Colbert Report last night.  
I was not offended.
On the contrary, I was thoroughly amused, in a "Oh God, that's so true. Our school board sucks" kind of way.
As a friend of mine posted on Facebook, "When your county is the on the Colbert Report, you feel a mixture of pride and deep, deep shame."

It's heart-breaking to know that the school board is essentially re-segregating our schools with full knowledge of their actions. Worse yet is to see the parents, teachers, students, and even non-parent people who care pleading with them to keep the current policies at the open hearings. 
They claim that they're doing it to make it easier on parents-- so they don't have to drive their kids as far in the mornings-- and so that certain students won't have to sit on the bus for close to an hour twice a day.
However, many students with long transportation times clearly stated that they didn't mind. They understood the importance of socio-economic (and for the most part, therefore racial) diversity, and they were willing to give up a few hours of sleep each week in favor of that.

Let's see... "democracy." Literal definition: ruled by the people.
We elect those we wish to make the decisions for us, because we believe them to represent our values. They're supposed to do what we want, even if it's only so we'll elect them for another term.
I don't see the school board representing our values. I'm sure there are those who agree with them, but where are they? Not at that hearing. If they aren't making themselves heard, why should the school board do what they might want?

Hey...wasn't there that thing back when hippies were around called the Civil Rights Something-or-other? What was that thing about, again? I don't seem to recall.


  1. Ok I will say one thing, and just one:

    When you become rich and famous and successful you darn well better remember your old friends. We liked and supported you for your talent and personality, not your wealth, power, or popularity. Don't go all hollywood starlet on us.

  2. Oh please. You know I wouldn't do that.

  3. I almost agree but these points are what make me impassioned for a different side of the story.

    The socio-economic diversity, IMO, is slanted: bus the poor to the rich schools. Parents/relatives at poor schools, on average, do not have the same flexibility that rich people have to
    1. pick up their kids if they have to leave school early
    2. go to PTA, school functions, etc. that occur after school because of
    a. limited transportation
    b. strict job hours

    Also, a different race may have a different perspective than some parents and may have little-to-no involvement with school activities because of 1. limited language skills or 2. no interest.

    Don't misconstrue my statements as being FOR the current school board but I have to admire the fact that enough parents were fed up enough with the previous school board to vote these people in. _That_ is democracy.

    But to protest what the current school board is trying to do doesn't take away there WAS, and still is, an existing problem with how we treat our students and their families.

  4. I like what you said about democracy.
    And about the problem with how we treat our students-- yes. That's definitely still an issue.


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