Can Ferguson School District Assist Missouri Governor to Overcome Racial Inequalities?

In a recent article, Missouri Governor – Jay Nixon – is planning to create a commission that will make recommendations for overcoming local racial inequalities for which the Ferguson Public School District can make the most contributions. According to Mr. Nixon, the commission will include representatives from various social and economic backgrounds.

Nixon believes that the commission needs to hear all voices which include the children to ensure that the Ferguson region becomes a fairer place for people to live. St. Louis Alderman – Antonio French – believes that the commission will not accomplish anything but remains hopeful. Nixon and his commission can accomplish much but they will have to depend off the Ferguson Public School District to make monumental contributions.

Whenever you look to change a system such as the Ferguson region, you must look for a point of inflection. Each person that is presently a citizen of the Ferguson region has attended a school during their lifetime. Therefore, each Ferguson citizen has sat in a classroom and for most people in the Ferguson region they are a product of the Ferguson Public Schools. In summary, the classroom in the Ferguson Public School District is the battle ground that will produce equality for all of its citizens.

Ferguson inequality begins in the Ferguson Public Schools. The first inequality exist in the drop out rate for Black students. According to the Missouri Department of Education the drop out rate for Black students in 2014, 2013, 2012, and 2011 was 639, 440, 605, and 643 students respectively. Over a four year period, this is a yearly average of 437 Black students that drop out of school. Over a twenty year period this equals 8,740 Black students who drop out of school.

Potentially, there are over 400 hundred students who will become imprisoned because they have dropped out of school. The education to prison pipeline involves interactions with the police which is normally a negative interaction. Overtime, many high school drop outs develop a hatred for the police because they did not have success in the Ferguson Public School District.

The high school drop out seems to have its greatest impact amongst Blacks. Nearly one in four Blacks males are incarcerated or institutionalized. Seventy-five percent of crimes committed in the US is committed by a high school drop out. The only way to decrease crime in this nation is to increase the number of graduates who otherwise have been pushed out of the Ferguson Public School District for a number of reasons.

The picture is even bleaker for African-Americans, with nearly one in four young black male dropouts incarcerated or otherwise institutionalized on an average day, the study said. That compares with about one in 14 young, male, white, Asian or Hispanic dropouts.

According to the National Dropout Prevention Network/Center, most students who drop out of school are more likely to be pushed out of school due to school factors. Those school factors include:

  • Missed too many school days
  • Was getting poor grades/failing school
  • Could not keep up with schoolwork
  • Thought could not complete course requirements
  • Could not get along with teachers
  • Could not get along with others
  • Was suspended
  • Thought would fail competency test
  • Did not feel safe
  • Was expelled

Many students who drop out of school are experiencing little success in the classroom and with their teachers. Even though Black students account for more than 70% of the student population in the Ferguson Public School District, their performance is not significantly above when compared with students of other ethnicities.

This lack of success has hurt the Ferguson community in several areas. The lack of success creates distrust between White teachers and Black students. Black students are able to witness students of other ethnicities prospering with their education but because they are not as successful it impacts their choices after leaving the Ferguson Public School District.

The unemployment rate for Blacks in Ferguson is 16 percent compared to 8.6 percent for Whites. The Ferguson Black population is 13,753 and the White population is 6,494. According to these statistics, there are 2,200 unemployed Blacks compared to 558 unemployed Whites.

This distrust can create bitterness between Whites and Blacks, especially between White cops and Black males because the Black male who did not have as much success in the classroom will blame the White teacher and this bitterness is transferred to any other White figure who has authority in their community.

The distrust between Whites and Blacks also hurts the business community. Since the local Blacks are less likely to get jobs in their community, when there is civil unrest, Blacks are more likely to lash out at the businesses that would not hire them. Many businesses will not hire Blacks who are educationally under qualified. Becoming qualified for employment normally begins with education and the education provided from the Ferguson Public Schools is paramount.

There is also a distrust that White cops develop towards Blacks because of the racism in the classroom. Many of the teachers in the Ferguson Public Schools are White females who are considered middle class. Many of these White females have either a direct or indirect association with the middle class police. If the Black students are a challenge for the White female in the classroom this message is conveyed either directly or indirectly. This will alter the perception of the White police person even before they have an interaction with a Black person. Since the White females actions in the classroom are limited, the reaction of the White police person is excessive. This is actually in alignment with the Raccelerate Phenomenon.

The efforts by the Missouri governor are commendable. However, the Missouri governor must address the impact that racial tensions between Black students and Ferguson Public School White teachers has impacted the Ferguson community.

Related Articles

Study Finds High Rate of Imprisonment Among Dropouts

Missouri Governor Announces Creation of ‘Ferguson Commission’

Ferguson, Missouri, remains on edge ahead of grand jury report

Missouri governor activates National Guard ahead of grand jury announcement

Dr. Derrick L. Campbell, Ed.D.
www.positiveracialrelationships.com
PO Box 1668 Blackwood, NJ 08012

 

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About Classroom Racism Exterminator

Racism is a menace and so we’ve been taught for ages which is the primary need for a diversity expert. However, even in this modern society of today where we see a lot of colored celebrities performing on stage with huge fan followings and of course an Afro-America President for the USA, we are still in a phase where racism exists in all its brutal glory and has been eating away at the society like a plague. Classrooms, are one of the most affected areas where color differences and racism exists to its extremes. Even after decades of progress and a lot of communal efforts at bridging the gaps between colored students, white students and teachers, it is sad to say that the disparities still exist and are just as pronounced today as they were back in the 1950s. Colored students, even in the likes of New York City, are attending under resourced schools or have been significantly isolated and made to be unequal in regular schools. Even if the teachers are well-intentioned, perpetuating the structural racism that has taken deep roots into the fabric of our education system is a tough task and make the need for a diversity expert imperative. Teachers need to recognize the biases that exist within the classroom and also take conscious measures to address them and their own biases of course. James Baldwin once said, “it is your very own responsibility to change this society, if you think of yourself as an educated person.” Dr. Derrick L. Campbell took this quote very effectively and straight to the heart and thus this Classroom Racism Exterminator happened. Classroom Racism Exterminator is an initiative that will teach you about your duty and moral obligation towards eliminating racism from the classrooms. This is where and how you will learn about what you need to do to produce a better society that is free of biases and disparities amongst the blacks and the whites. Because we understand how classroom biases and conversations about racism are difficult and how teachers and students almost avoid the topics altogether, we have put together a range of effective methods and products to help address the problem at hand and talk meaningfully to counter issues related to race and racism in the classroom. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell understands that it takes a lot of courage to talk about race and racism and that racial issues need to be viewed through a very critical lens that can understand and attend to the pertaining aspects of racism in the classroom. And therefore through this website we have made a conscious effort to eliminate racism from the classroom and make the educational system equal and beneficial for all. We know and we understand that there are no words that can actually describe how racism feels. There are cases and everybody tends to deal with it in their own manner. Some might lash out verbally or others might just withdraw into shells. Whatever the case, people don’t talk about it openly and teachers don’t really make a conscious effort at addressing the issue. We don’t really know if our children or if the youth is learning to be educated or become racists in their classroom. Our program is focused on helping children of color and regardless of their race, their full potential. We want every student to be able to recognize and reach their full potential so that they think of themselves as responsible citizens of their country and not regard themselves as worthless human beings. Here you will find motivational books and flash card games, all of which have been designed focusing on eliminating racism completely from our classrooms. The books and the games have been consciously designed keeping in mind the American society and educational system. It is a small effort on our and Dr. Campbell’s part to help this society become a better place to live in. A little about diversity expert Dr. Campbell Dr. Derrick L. Campbell the driving force behind Classroom Racism Exterminator is a dynamic figure and a constant source of motivation for us. He has a Bachelors of Science in Electronics Engineering Technology, Math Education, a Masters in Education Administration and also holds a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership. Dr. Campbell is a well known personality throughout the nation. He has lectured at various events including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Iron Sharpens Iron Men’s Conference and a lot of local churches. He is a personality well dedicated towards eliminating the plague of racism from our classrooms and helping every child recognize his/her true potential not the color of their skin. He realizes how a child would feel if he/she was made to think they are worthless human beings. Diversity expert Dr. Campbell is compassionate and related to the experiences and therefore this initiative is a constant and continual effort to eliminate racism manifested in us, completely from the classroom and from our society.
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