Saturday, February 25, 2006

Educational equity after Katrina

Lessons learned after the disaster

The destruction wrought by Hurricane Katrina exposed for all the world what many of us have long known: America remains deeply divided by race and class. The lack of opportunities for poor people and people of color continue to have devastating consequences. As Americans watched in horror, Katrina children were left behind by the storm and subsequent flooding.

According to Robert Rothman, the implications for education are obvious and profound. Although leaving no child behind is national policy, many of our children didn't see national policy enforced in the aftermath of the hurricane. Many educators say that the Katrina debacle is just one more example of many of our children lack the same resources as their peers.

Read Rothman's report in Voices in Urban Education, a publication of the Annenberg Institute for School Reform, Brown University.

Related: Separate but Equal? Schooling Of Evacuees Provokes Debate, Katrina became symbol of U.S. racial, social divide

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Brea said...

Change often takes a disaster - unfortunately. Baltimore has some attractive programs which recruites college graduates to work for the school system while earning a master's degree. Unfortunately, I don't know the sucess or retention rates or what impact the programs are having. I wonder if other big cities have the same type of programs.

DCS said...

Brea: It sounds as if Baltimore has some very interesting programs. They're certainly worth looking into.

Long before Katrina, lack of educational equity was evident throughout the country. Even within the same district, you could have schools that could be identified as the "haves" and the "have nots." With Katrina, the issue suddenly became front and center - "in your face," if you will.

We'll have to see if things improve in public school systems in the post-Katrina days, or if it will continue to be business as usual.