Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Why No Diversity in Charleston County's All-Black Schools?

Academic Magnet High School is 15 percent nonwhite. Unsurprisingly, that 15 percent met the same standards as white students. We could argue that AMHS shouldn't exist, since it skims the cream off CCSD's other high schools, but the decision to open it (for Gregg Meyers's daughter) was made decades ago, and now CCSD has one of highest-achieving high schools in the state.

That didn't happen by accident. The school takes the highest-achieving applicants from Charleston County--and some from other nearby counties, who take the places of Charleston County students because they scored higher and know how to work the system. The school has a long waiting list, most likely containing some nonwhite students.

Undoubtedly, some students living in the Burke attendance area attend AMHS. Burke High/Middle School, at nearly 99 percent nonwhite, circles the drain even as you read. This year's graduating class is the smallest ever. Its attractive modern buildings are not even half full, even with middle-school students counted. It rates below average today, and the state nearly took it over several years ago. Even so, a large chunk of its students--all nonwhite--do not live in Burke's attendance area. Some have accused CCSD in the past of "dumping" nonwhite students from other high schools into Burke when they have caused trouble elsewhere.

Now CCSD plans to hire an "executive director of diversity and inclusion." Why do I suspect that white applicants need not waste their time applying? More importlantly, why does the district need to pay probably $100 thousand for another edublob layer to shoulder the "right" choices? And what choices will those be--to freeze out top-scoring students from AMHS because they are white? Weasels.

What AMHS parent Charlisa Pugh and The Coalition Pastor Thomas Dixon (both from out-of-state, by the way) call "education assassination" is a two-way street. White students and teachers are routinely bullied in CCSD's de facto segregated schools. Sanders-Clyde on the peninsula greets white visitors with a beautiful Jonathan Green mural showing only nonwhite faces. CCSD routinely excuses rude and demeaning treatment of whites as part of nonwhite culture--how racist can you get?

While CCSD  teaches AMHS students racial stereotypes to avoid, how about  its holding nonwhite students to the same standards of classroom behavior, including language? It might cause some white parents to rethink their choices.

Until the county figures out how to challenge nonwhites even in mostly nonwhite schools, the disparity in AMHS percentages will continue.

Until the county figures out how to treat whites in mostly nonwhite schools, de facto segregation will continue to grow.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"De facto segregation" works both ways. Exhibit A: AMHS.