Monday, June 22, 2009

Not so fast Mike!

Mayor Bloomberg is overly pleased with himself with regard to recently released statistics regarding the graduation/dropout rates for NYC 2008. Without even addressing the fact that the numbers may very well be skewed based on the "new" way the city identifies so called discharges. Even if you disregard the stats that stipulate that the trend toward better numbers began 4 years before Bloomberg ever entered Gracie Mansion. If you disregard all of that, there still exists a major disparity between black and white students with regard to graduation and dropout rates. Oh the "gap" has narrowed, by 16% over the past four years, better, but certainly nothing to celebrate. To date the achievement gap, based on students that enter and leave High School on time, is 21%. This is, simply put, unacceptable. What is being actually done to change these numbers? Why such a large gap? We all know the base answers, from environment to parental involvement to self-motivation and determination, but those issues still don't answer what is being done. Why are our children (and Hispanic children) so far behind? We have a part to play in this equation, of that there is no doubt, but the numbers point to a much larger issue at play here. This is not about passing blame, there still exists an underlying institutional separation and discrimination throughout our education system. The "system" leans fiercly against succes for minorities, and while some groups have overcome (and surpass) the majority through extreme cultural differences (notably Asians), there is still something missing. The numbers, however faulty do idicate progress, but progress for some, while leaving thousands of others behind is not progress at all.

see some stats here -