Well, the results are in, and while they're unfortunate, they're not really surprising even though in a "post-racial" society, they should be. A poll conducted by The Leadership Conference Education Fund and the Anzalone Liszt Grove Research firm shows that black families overwhelmingly believe that their schools are underfunded and that racial inequality is growing.
The poll was essentially developed to “explore how Black and Latino parents and families view the American education system’s success in educating their children,” according to a press release about the survey. The results found 90 percent of black parents and families believe schools in black communities are underfunded compared to White communities, while 75 percent of black parents and families believe that the education black students receive is worse than what white students.
“Among black parents and family members whose child’s teachers are mostly White," a report about the poll reads. "Only 42 percent believe that schools are trying their best to educate black students, 16 points below the share of those whose children have mostly black teachers.”
It's no secret that America has had a very rocky past when it comes to educating black students, and years later, the implications still seem to be the same. People still believe that black schools undeniably get the short end of the stick. In reality, how off base is that claim?
Liz King, the senior policy analyst and the director of education policy for The Leadership Conference Education Fund, said that there has been a lot of research that’s come out lately that suggests an implicit bias that educators, who are mostly White, have towards Black and Latino children.
This poll comes at a very interesting and critical time for public education in the United States. States are currently developing education plans as part of their obligations under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA). The Act, which was instituted under the Obama Administration, continues to be a punching bag for Republicans. In March, Republicans voted to roll back accountability measures established by the Obama Administration, Education Week reported.
Despite feeling unequally catered to, Black, Latino and Asian children, make up a majority of public school students in America. Therefore, there needs to be more of a commitment to these students. Instead of chipping away at acts implemented to ensure that students are given a fighting chance, more policy should be developed with black and Latino students in mind. Moreover, we need more black and Latino teachers who understand how to reach these students, and more training for white teachers who don't. This isn't 1954 in the Jim Crow South, so we need America to act like it.