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Betsy DeVos statement on historically black colleges and universities

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Replies to: Betsy DeVos statement on historically black colleges and universities

  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 8,940 Senior Member
    There are important distinctions between charter schools and public schools (not the least being unionization and oversight), but I honestly wasn't making an argument about the specifics of her plans, just pointing out that the details are what matters in complex policy like this. We don't yet really know what the policy will be, to be honest, so those of us who are interested will have to keep paying attention :)
  • roethlisburgerroethlisburger Registered User Posts: 536 Member
    edited March 1
    @cobrat

    It's ironic you're complaining about the Wilson quote, when you more than just about any other person on this forum, is in favor of exactly that type of tracked education system based on standardized test scores and grades, from an early age.
  • 3puppies3puppies Registered User Posts: 735 Member
    and what happens, @roethlisburger , to all of the "dumb" kids? Even if discipline is enforced, many kids in inner cities do not have the family support system or values to pass on. These kids rarely do their homework and they don't care.. Their best chance is if they get quality after-school programs, including tutoring, but also with meaningful activities.

    In many public schools, racial imbalance is getting worse every year. Single parent families are more common than not. Too many schools have 90% or more of the kids getting free breakfast and lunch, they still have high truancy rates, and the highest ranking kids may get straight A's on a curve, but still only get 1100 SAT scores. Graduation rates are under a third, because poverty rates are soaring. Literacy is terrible - yet kids are passed from year to year. Kids who can't read at close to grade level, have extra difficulty with doing homework. If you can't read well, it is almost impossible to do well in Algebra.

    The problems are far bigger than simple school vouchers would address.




  • cobratcobrat Registered User Posts: 11,137 Senior Member
    edited March 1
    @cobrat

    It's ironic you're complaining about the Wilson quote, when you more than just about any other person on this forum, is in favor of exactly that type of tracked education system based on standardized test scores and grades, from an early age.

    I'm not in favor of deliberately allocating "liberal education" solely for one class and denying it to others as Wilson's speech advocates. Especially considering the subtext of his statement is that the former were meant for an elite socio-economic elite as he perceived it.

    Perceptions which were strongly shaped by the social ideal of feudalistic hierarchy popular among the southern White elite of his generation and earlier.

    Also, keep in mind that the idea of tracking by test scores/grades would have been considered an exceedingly radical idea and one most southern elites of the period....along with most of their aristocratic European counterparts would vehemently oppose as their idea of merit was based on wealth and what social class/group one/one's family belonged....not the merits of one's intellect or demonstrated academic performance. Why that would be "too common" or "bourgeois" in their view during that period.

  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 8,940 Senior Member
  • sorghumsorghum Registered User Posts: 3,140 Senior Member
    And why limit it to the dumb kids? Why not cease educating the ugly? The disabled? The poor? And don't get me started on those sinister southpaws...

    Whether you like it or not, dumbness is relevant to educability in ways that ugliness, disability, poverty, and handedness are not.
  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 8,940 Senior Member
    I'm an educator, @sorghum , and with some severe exceptions (at both extreme ends), I can safely say that every kid is educable. More seriously, how do you identify "intelligence"? It doesn't even have a consensus definition, and if you like IQ tests, well, it's quite possible to study for them. There's an enormous body of work on this kind of tracking, and it's largely fallen out of favor. People with real expertise who have real bodies of research and real empirical data haven't come to any consensus on any of the things your advocating: educability, intelligence, or tracking.
  • sorghumsorghum Registered User Posts: 3,140 Senior Member
    ^Maybe you should read my actual comment before you assume what I am or am not advocating.

    I am an educator, and I recognize that there are dumb kids and genius kids. I have not suggested, here, what approaches should be taken to deal with that.


  • marvin100marvin100 Registered User Posts: 8,940 Senior Member
    Great comment, @juillet - thanks for sharing!
  • Ohiodad51Ohiodad51 Registered User Posts: 1,804 Senior Member
    Just a question, but does it bother any of you who are talking about what an idiot DeVos is that the "offending" passage is in the present tense? For what it is worth, this is why examples like drinking fountains and the negro leagues are inopposite. They might be relevant if the Negro leagues existed today as an option instead of MLB, or if there were everybody water fountains and black only water fountains. But manifestly we are not in the same place circa 2017 as 1917 as it relates to minority admission to colleges.

    To me it is not such a crazy idea to say that HBCUs (or women's colleges for that matter) as they exist in the current climate are an expression of "more options" that help students flourish?

    I really don't understand the argument except in the simplistic she said x but really meant y, and y proves she is a racist/dummy.

    I also don't have a problem with the first part of her statement. Can any of you actually posit a clear and coherent argument that the actual words used in the actual statement, to wit that there were "too many students in America who did not have equal access to education. They saw that the system wasn't working, that there was an absence of opportunity, so they took it upon themselves to provide the solution" is wrong? And yes, I read the argument that the "system was actualy working as intended" but that is not all together accurate. The constitution prohibits race based discrimination. Any such discrimination is then not the system working as intended.

    I am not really a DeVos fan (like on most things in an administration six weeks in I am agnostic) and have no dog in this particular fight. But usually I can at least see both sides of an argument. Here I just don't understand it.
  • PostmodernPostmodern Registered User Posts: 880 Member
    @Ohiodad51 , I have been trying for 15 minutes now to decide how to respond to you post, which while thoughtful and not without merit, IMHO misses the point, which has been explained many times in this thread already.

    So I am just reminded of Louis Armstrong's famous quote when he was asked "What is Jazz?"

    He said, "If you gotta ask, you'll never know".
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