In the Huffington Post today the president of the Children's Defense Fund, Marian Wright Edelman prefaces her article with the King quote above. She has written a great article raising concern over the number of Black students being suspended from school---18 percent of the student body and 40 percent of students who received one or more out-of-school suspensions, one every four seconds. Suspensions are the first step to being left further behind on the path to drop out--Black students are more than twice as likely to drop out of school as White students, 763 each day.
She applauds the recent announcement by the DOJ to address suspension practices in the local schools and denounces the cradle to prison system that suspensions of Blacks foster. By the time public schools are suspending Black students more likely that not that public school has failed the educational needs of those students. The amount of discipline is inversely proportional in my mind to the quality of the education received. We do not need more Federal involvement in our schools. What we need are more charter schools with parent involvement, vouchers and the right to move to the school of a parent's choice, and teacher and principal accountability to the students and parents and due to the importance of education, to the community at large. Charter Schools work and they even work in the worst of neighborhoods. If Archimedes were alive today to paraphrase "If I hand a charter school to teach in, I could move all minds through the door of opportunity, not to be left behind in swamps of suspension and prison."
Charter A Ramp Off Cradle To Prison Road
A mind is a terrible thing to waste or to hinder its efforts to learn
The stats on Black, Minority and poor students' performance should cause great concernOne can only imagine the frustration of wanting to learn yet slowly falling behind
A world in which the elite read and write and to the disadvantaged literate is most unkind
The Children's Defense Fund is right to raise the issue of why so many minorities and poor are suspended
As all sane persons would agree suspensions based on race or class can never be defendedTo solve this problem what we do not need is an investigation at local levels by the DOJ
Teamed up with the behemoth DOE to any chance of education of our kids slay
The war against the road from public classroom to prison in the slums is on the road to defeat
While in the charter schools freed from bureaucracy eager minds have failure in rout, in defeat enough to incur the teachers' union wrath might ask,
"Why is it way before suspensions, the public schools are failing such basic literacy, spelling and computing tasks?
Why if allowed with vouchers, minority parents are lining up in the streets
To get their child into a charter school where for a child a chance to learn will greet?"
The stats tell the story on charter schools' performance even in the slums of D.C.
The charter schools perform, the public schools fail, not one Obama child there to see
Is it because the teachers there are there to teach,
Free of union dues into their pockets to reach?
Is it because the parents there have in their kids’ education a stake and a voice?
They are committed consumers involved in the education marketplace of choice
Public School unions’ job's to protect the teachers not the kids
No wonder education in many classroom there is on the skids
Children’s Defense Fund should for charter schools get one hundred percent behind
By in large, best way to reduce suspensions and dropouts and end the waste of minds.
© January 18, 2014 Michael P. Ridley aka the Alaskanpoet