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Learning at its Best

The Diversity Crisis in Taxpayer-Funded Education

With the happenings of “white flight,” unconstitutional school funding systems, the School-to-Prison Pipeline, the consequences of No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, and anti-grassroots corporatized School Choice…the education community in the nation has arrived at a point of hostility toward diversity. Constantly, diversity within the school has become something that governmental and societal action actively discourages from happening, even when the benefits are far more beneficial than perceived risk conceived out of prejudice.

When education has a segregation problem, education also has a teaching and learning problem and it prevails as long as the former subsists. When children have a lack of diversity in the classroom and within communities, whether they are macro or micro communities, opportunities of learning about different cultures and communities do not occur, thus allowing for stereotypical, racist, sexist, classist, xenophobic, and nativism attitudes to perpetuate. Consequently they become ignorant to reality and susceptible to cultures of hate, misunderstanding, fear, and provocation, which cultivates communal ideology of other cultures and people that is negatively prejudicial in nature. When this occurs, schools become a dangerous place that assist in creating potentially dangerous youth who will enter society thinking it is acceptable to commit actions that are unjust in nature to other people who are different because of the lack of sameness.

Most surprisingly though, is that the lack of diversity in schools exist mostly within suburban and urban school districts and schools, with rural communities leading the way in cultivating the culture of diversity within their schools and communities. Although, this may have relation to the fact that rural education is something that receives very little attention from federal and state governments. Nonetheless, the issue is becoming something major in suburban communities quicker than in previous times. With suburban schools acting as the last frontier to hold back other populations and “protect” today’s youth from other cultures the problem becomes more dangerous because its repellent influence is money, which quality education prepares students to earn.

However, the most damming reality in this movement to stratify students by social indicators is that to a certain degree the school choice movement’s corporate sector and the lack of governmental action regarding ensuring the protection of civil rights in 2nd generation schools makes this possible. These schools perpetuate academic segregation in whatever communities they reside in without any effort to reduce subversive reaction simply because it caters to corporate goals. More, even when with instances of widespread segregation and diversity repellant practices are at play, school choice options have regulation far more inadequate than 1st generation public schools. Meaning henceforth, youth will flow into 2nd generation schools with far more inadequate safeguards than the former norm in schooling, therefore allowing segregationist practices to prevail, which allows for youth to have the idea that stratification is acceptable and that the consequence for it are dismal, if at all existent.

Conclusively, when diversity’s importance within education receives little investment, or acknowledgement, the future of education becomes less certain and the value of education becomes less. Education is only beneficial if its use is to combat the societal injustices of our time so that future generations can proceed in progressiveness. When education becomes the purveyor of ideologies that allow youth to harbor the idea that sameness is the key to quality education, than education has failed. Its failure is the measurement in which youth know and value the importance of connecting with and at minimal attempting to understand other people from other cultures. When education becomes the vehicle in perpetuating a message that “white [culture] is right,” it undermines the progressive stance in education entirely and it disembodies the importance of maladjustment. The fact that government inadequate response works in conspiracy with the societal desire of some to remain a country divided by differences by allowing for private industry to perpetuate that ideology in the pursuit of profit, is tantamount of educational abuse. Youth, especially in today’s society, where mobility is growing in ease, need to have the ability to work with people who are different while respecting the benefit of maladjustment can bring to society as a whole and to personal progress. Although, schools and school districts should not just strive for diversity in select populations, but it is important that diversity occurs in all populations, inside and outside of school, so that youth can feel comfortable working with other cultures in today’s society.

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About Jabreel Chisley

I'm just a 18 year old virtual schooled student who one day wishes to own a school of my own (and to also be a lawyer.)

Discussion

3 thoughts on “The Diversity Crisis in Taxpayer-Funded Education

  1. Many Americans do not recognize the extractive and divisive roles that bodies corporate have played throughout the history of the US of A. Whether in relation to “resources” in/on the earth or in the form human bodies, the values ascribed to, and then taken from those resources have been pivotal in the creation and maintenance of social tiers and divides. In a nation-state so proud of its exceptional status, this blindness would seem startling since even at the level of small local governmental units, one finds the concept of “incorporated” in many founding documents. See, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Municipal_corporations

    The “limits” of corporate bodies established by founding documents such as charters, constitutions, or articles of incorporation are quite divisive. Insofar as human relationships are concerned they establish clear “us/them” boundary lines that, despite illusory declarations or freedom, statements of good intent and a desire to join humans together, result in stultifying non-change vis-a-vis social divides.

    In a society based upon sacred founding documents, individual responsibility for what is taking place becomes diluted and eventually disposed of since “the law of the land” governs affairs. Whether one looks at business or governmental corporations, we see only functionaries carrying out “policies” that are less related to affairs external to business and government that to assuring that business and governmental bodies continue to exist.

    There are many fiduciaries (whether bought, elected, appointed or hired) in both business and governmental “school corporations” — those fiduciaries, notwithstanding their individual desires, are duty-bound to the corporation they serve. They are required to protect and assure the corporate body’s continued existence and, in this manner, a Master-Slave relationship exists behind a curtain of comforting words. The fiduciary/slaves are caught up in a life-and-death struggle, for should they resist too much they will be fired, discharged, let go, forced to resign — and they will not be fed.

    Civil Rights have either gone backwards, or perhaps may have simply reformed in a verbally adept society — both the law and language are violent when “the state” holds a monopoly on violence. See, Weber, K.E. (1918) Politics as a vocation. Dunker & Humblodt, Munich, Germany.

    Posted by Brent Snavely | February 16, 2013, 8:53 am
  2. Jabreel, your post was very long, and I feel like you kind of talked yourself in circles and gave examples that did not support your arguments. I also don’t believe that the education system is as skewed as you think EVERYWHERE in the U.S. The high school that I attended had a good mixture of cultures, and everyone got along and never had a problem working together and seeing each others as equals. I will agree though that if that had not been the case in my school, and I had graduated not knowing how to civilly work with and accept others of all cultural diversities, then I would not have considered my education complete.

    Posted by Roanna Council | February 19, 2013, 7:45 pm
    • Thank you for the respectful criticism, it helps a lot. This was actually so long because it was apart of a bigger piece of work, but I condensed it down as far as possible. I dont think that systematic failure like this is in EVERY school district or school, but with the increased urbanization and the removal of actual community schools, I think patterns like this have the potential to become more widespread than what they are now.

      Posted by Jabreel Chisley | February 21, 2013, 10:57 am

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