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The Miseducation of the Black Student

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Segregation of white and Negro children in the public schools of a State solely on the basis of race, pursuant to state laws permitting or requiring such segregation, denies to Negro children the equal protection of the laws guaranteed by the Fourteenth Amendment—even though the physical facilities and other “tangible” factors of white and Negro schools may be equal.

In 1957, African Americans, especially African American children, took a no gravity-like step forward with the Brown v. the Board of Education ruling.

Nearly a half century later, the consequences are weighted heavily.

For many African Americans of the era, the Brown ruling was a victory, a cause for celebration.  It marked a turning point for us; it signaled the beginning of equal opportunity and most importantly, it signaled it for the future because, “the kids are our future.”

But did anyone really stop to think what it really meant?  Were we so enamored about the now that we didn’t care about tomorrow?

Or did the celebration simply blind us from the repercussions?brown1.jpg

The issue isn’t about what the children went through then (the physical and emotional turmoil by the white students) but what the children are going through now.

blackschool.jpgBefore Brown, schools were not exempt from the laws of Jim Crow.  They too were segregated but amidst this segregation was unity.  Although books were old and falling apart and although tools were almost useless, teachers and students were family.  Teachers cared about the students as if they were their own child.

Before Brown the children were important.

After Brown, the children were just some more faces.

Today, there are all these programs and tests designed to help black children keep up with their white peers only for the large part to fail.  They fail because they are not enough black teachers in the schools who can nurture the black child as they did before 1957.

For the African American child to succeed, we need to go back to before Brown to when there were black teachers who cared for the black child.

Without the nurture, there is no learning and without the learning, there is no future.

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