This is an article that I have put off because of the mixed emotions in dealing with the issues I have. Since this is the start of a new school year I thought I would direct some energy towards the school systems. I am particularly interested in our black youth. I was a product of the Washington, DC. public school system years ago that failed me and so many of my peers. The Black teachers for the most part never considered WHY we were so disruptive and unwilling to come to class.
Their ability to fail a failing student is to not understand where we are as a people. As a teacher you go out and master the higher education that the Europeans have designed for themselves and you try to instill that knowledge in black children. We rejected as much as we failed to comprehend the things we didn't think would help us. That's our creative intelligence at it's best. Slaves weren't lazy, they just weren't being paid. The European curriculum that is failing our youth is being heralded as a much needed vehicle in OUR society. Why? Most of US have succeeded in life, not because of that knowledge but because of what we have learned subsequent to( and in spite of) that education.
You will as teachers never be able to hold the attention of the majority of students that don't look forward to coming to your classes. Why is the education that you are providing so out of touch that kids sleep through your lessons? The school system will never change the curriculum to accommodate the needs of our black kids. You compound their misery by giving them a failng grade when in fact you have failed to understand that you are a pawn in their failure. These kids walk around the school suppressing their knowledge because they know that something is wrong with the information that is being taught. Even a young child can figure out and understand that they are not the focus of an effort to educate them but are more a by product of what they decide to learn.
To continue to teach in a system that has a staggering failure rate is to continue to get PAID. I hear teachers say that they must teach what the school systems want....... Did you go away to get that education to fail someone already suffering from the ills of low self esteem etc. The people who control the school system obviously think that they have theirs and the kids have theirs to get. To not understand this cycle of black on black dysfunction is to be blinded by your MASTERY of irrevelant subject matters. To fail our children for not MASTERING subjects you just learned to master as an adult is treason. Your stringent structured society approach to education is suffocating the life out of kids that could master the world with a little help from a realistic brother or sister teacher. I guess you got bills to pay and can't look out for some of your own inspite of your failure to deliver an education designed to fail black people.
We didn't just fall through the cracks, there were really no cracks just big human size holes. You labored with the apathy of a school system that warehoused black people to keep them off the streets until you were old enough to join the military. The military was the only place that offered you a career, this after thirteen years of public school training. Why does it take K-12 grade to produce people that can't get a job? What's the point teachers and school staffs? If in thirteen years, students of your curriculum are not ready to enter the work place running, someone has failed the students.
It is my contention that the longer our kids stay in this Eurocentric environment the worst their grades get. They start out with A's and B's and continue their decline right through high school. Most are already failing life before life really begins but no one wants to take the blame. To have a child study and fail subjects that kill their hopes and dreams is something that needs some serious consideration. Any child that is trying to learn should not be given a F but instead told that they are special and that we will come up with game plan JUST for them. I know this is not feasable in your SYSTEM but is continued sudent failure? The public school system is so systematic that it is failing the students without a mechanism for change.
As a former student that the system failed, here are the real lessons.
Don't forget your afrocentricity even as you present your eurocentric message.
All of your higher education will never connect your students to their greatness.
Your care and concern may be the best lesson your black student will ever learn from you.
An (F) for your student is an (F) for you.
For those Teachers who have nothing to say, silence is BETRAYAL.
To my third and fourth grade teacher at River Terrace Elementary School Mrs. Gwendolyn Cadenhead YOU taught me all that I ever needed to know. Thank you for being there.
Would you like to spend your money with your own people?
Are you interested in superior quality merchandise? Then go to My Store