Academic inferiority, its recognition and treatment

One of the reasons that No Child Left Behind is such a wonderful program is that it forces schools to recognize the poor performance of their black and hispanic students.

Before George Bush’s “No Child Left Behind” Act, schools sweep their failure to teach black and hispanic students under the rug. The mandatory testing and requirement for continuous improvements forces schools to come to grip with the particularly awful education that this country provides for too many black and hispanic children, and deal with it.

The compassioniate way to fix the problem is to fix education, to do the hard work to make sure that black and hispanic children are prepared to learn.

The way popular among many school bureaucrats is to deny the problem.

To wit:

Unless you believe that African-American and Latino kids are somehow, as a group, academically inferior to white kids,” Welner said, “then you have to believe there are a lot of kids in those lower-track classes who have the potential for tremendous academic success.”

The way that African-American and Latino kids are somehow, as a group, ‘academically inferior is that schoold don’t educate them. What person believes that blacks and hispanics earn graduate degrees, earn undergradate degrees, or graduate high school at the same rate of whites? Who thinks that blacks and hispanics enter the 12th, 11th, 10th, 9th, 8th, 7th, 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd, or 1st grades, or kindergarten for that matter, with the same academic advantages as white children?

The context for the above quote is a story, courtesy of Half-Sigma titled “Higher learning: More middle-schoolers leapfrog into advanced classes — but are minorities being left behind?:”

For decades, high-school students have taken community-college courses to dress up their resumes and prepare for college.

Now, competitive middle-schoolers in Florida are flocking to sign up for high-school classes.

For parents and students, it’s a great chance to get ahead. And school districts have something else to brag about: seventh- and eighth-graders completing courses such as Algebra II Honors and biology that had been reserved primarily for ninth- and 10th-graders.

But the nation’s foremost scholars in middle-school education are worried the fast-growing trend is leaving minority children behind. They also question whether the practice is legal because, nationwide, it has tended to result in students being segregated by race.

In Florida, high-school-level classes at middle schools are filled mostly with white kids. That’s the case even at some schools where most of the kids are black or Hispanic, according to an Orlando Sentinel analysis of public records from the Florida Department of Education and school districts.

The trend has sparked a lively debate nationwide between those who say middle-school students aren’t ready to be treated like high-school students and those arguing that the brightest children shouldn’t be held back because minorities aren’t signing up for certain courses.

Some disparities in Central Florida this school year include:

*At Lee Middle School in Orlando, 93 percent of the kids who take high-school geometry and 77 percent who take Earth-Space science are white. Meanwhile, 29 percent of all Lee students are white.

Predictably, the leftists want to criminalize education, both to hold down high-performing kids and hide exposing the fact taht schools leave blacks and hispanics as the low performing kids:

Though officials at the federal Office of Civil Rights wouldn’t speculate about whether local schools have broken any rules, some of the country’s leading scholars say it could be just a matter of time before such disparities trigger an investigation.

George Bush was the greatest President for civil rights that America ever had. While other Presidents either ignored the issue or took the easy way out by puffing their chests and staging worthless shows of force, Bush recognized the crucial role that education plays. George Bush revolutionaized America’s educational system, creating the “No Child Left Behind” framework that forces schools to objective assess students and show continuous improvements.

While leftists, both in this article and elsewhere, want to make American education equally useless to everyone, those who care about our nation’s future want every student to be rigorously educated. Even if the first step in that process is recognizing that we fall short of that goal now.