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‘Kette On The DoE And Achievement Gaps

Eduwonkette is keeping the folks at the NYC DoE’s Ministry of Truth working into the wee hours of the morning, with this week’s deconstruction of the Bloomberg-Klein administration claims that they have diminished the achievement gap.

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  • 1 Phyllis C. Murray
    · Aug 3, 2008 at 8:44 am

    THE NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND WAKE UP CALL

    By Phyllis C. Murray

    “Both the city and state rank near the bottom nationally in their ability to graduate black male students from high school, according to a new report Just 32 percent of black males graduated on time from city high schools in 2006 – compared to 57 percent of the city’s white students – ranking the city 54th of the 63 large school districts surveyed. The state similarly placed a dismal 45th nationally for its 37 percent graduation rate of black males in 2006 – far short of the 75 percent graduation rate of its white male students.” From: “NY WOE ON MINORITY GRAD RATES” By YOAV GONEN Posted: 3:47 am July 26, 2008

    The No Child Left Behind Legislation of 2001 (Public Law 107-110), has been a wake up call for many. This United States federal law is the key to a reauthorization of a number of federal programs that aim to improve the performance of America’s primary and secondary schools by increasing the standards of accountability for states, school districts and schools, as well as providing parents more flexibility in choosing which schools their children will attend. Thus, throughout New York City, parents are now given opportunities to decide where to send Johnny. And if we look at the minority graduation rates, we can see why many parents are turning their backs on the public school system. They must feel that the city, state and federal governments have also turned their backs on inner-city public schools.

    These parents are looking for vouchers, scholarships, charter schools, private and religious institutions to meet their needs. Far too often this pattern is repeated nationwide. We can even say that the public schools throughout the nation have been pauperized as one hears the cries of overcrowded classrooms, crumbling school buildings, out-of-date libraries, lack of textbooks, low academic standards, student violence, inadequate school safety, and failure to have highly qualified teachers i.e. one who has fulfilled the state’s certification and licensure requirements in every classrooom.

    When education is not a priority, the funding educators seek to implement the NCLB Law is never adequate. What we see is the fact that European and Asian nations are outdistancing the U.S. in the competitive world job market. These nations have reached the goal of educational excellence in their schools. These nations are investing in their greatest resource: their children.

    Martin Luther King was able to forecast this phenomenon in a speech he made to the UFT in 1964. “Education for all Americans has always been inadequate,” King said. “The richest nation on earth has never allocated enough of its abundant resources to build sufficient schools to compensate adequately its teachers. We squander funds on highways and the frenetic pursuit of recreation, on the overabundance of overkill armaments but we pauperize education.”

    It was Dr. King who reminded us that” we are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” Collaboration is the key in all successful negotiations. But that collaboration must embody mutual trust and mutual respect.
    Dr. King spoke, but apparently those in positions of leadership and power in government were not listening. King was assassinated in 1968. His legacy lives on today in those who wish to join teachers and concerned parents in a quest to provide the best education possible for all Americans. Yes, teachers and parents must continue to be the best advocates for children and education in America.