Today I just happened to be in a public place where CNN was on display.
The subject at hand was the arrest of Black activists in Durham regarding the threat they felt in the loss of the local school busing plan.
The panel consisted of the White Conservative school board member that lead the charge to have the "diversity" plan retired, a Black Progressive preacher who told of the damage that is wrought in having Black kids all alone by themselves and a Black man who is CNN's education consultant and principal of a high performing Black charter school in New York City. (I will update this article with his name once I get off of the road).
The old arguments were heard. The CNN host asked the school board member to justify taking apart what is not broken. The school board member put forth some arguments that indicated that the present busing plan negatively impacts poor Black students in the system. Their graduation rate remains at 54% and it negatively impacts their ability to gain access into magnet schools in the system later on. He made some points that I need to go back and research in order to clarify and substantiate.
The Black preacher who expressed fear of the loss of integration (would it be unfair for me to suggest that he lose the Jheri curl?) attempted to make this a debate about the benefits of diversity. He made the case that Blacks in integrated environments register an increase in academic performance. Guess what - I AGREE WITH HIM.
My major point of departure with this man is that he, like Jonathan Kozol attribute these academic performance gains for Black students that go to school in diverse environments as being the beneficiaries of diversity itself. This is 100% inaccurate in my view.
The benefit of these diverse environments have more to do with the enforced prevailing culture and little to do with the actual racial make up of the school. In other words the same practices that allow a small group of Black children to prosper in a diverse environment can also be fused into an all-Black school environment to achieve the very same results.
The CNN education advisor runs such a school.
It is time for the bigoted theories that have been adopted by those who have influence over our community to be attacked and put to rest. It is so clear that "Non-White White Supremacy" is the unspoken assumption that is at work which causes such angst among the protesters.
I would have far more respect for them if they where to say outright how much they see value in the presence of White kids in a class room.
When I listened to Julian Bond argue about school integration he argued it from the point of the school being sheltered from the normal racial neglect. Bond argued on the show "America's Black Forum" that a school that has White children in it won't suffer from the policy attacks that an all-Black school is treated to. He argued that the White parents would not allow it.
Mr Bond's model does not account for the circumstances in which the students within the school and the parents who are charged with managing their children's educational career are significant portions of the obstacle to quality education. Once again we see an outsourced focus on perceived threats.
I counter this with my observation that this is yet another instance of the damage that is received to the interests of the Black community by the prevailing ethos which has us oriented toward struggling outward for solutions than on MANAGING the human resources within our midst to a directed outcome.
It is impossible for the Black community to achieve the status of full equality when so many of those who are our thought leaders are willing to transact Black Inferiority for the temporary gain that is in front of them. In as much as there will never be a situation where no "All-Black Schools" exist - the more comprehensive and perpetual solution is to focus upon developing the key management competencies by which these Black school can made to deliver the wholesome environment that is seen as attractive in these diverse schools.
I am not opposed to diversity.
I am only oppose to diversity as a means of covering over the need for the Black community to let loose of certain thoughts and assumptions that are not working for our interests. The outward "permanent chase" is how the masses hope to one day obtain a resolution.
I merely seek to bring the locus of control back inward.