Far too often our children’s education is caught in a politicized adult society, currently struggling with its moral identity while at the same time desperately trying to achieve the American Dream by ‘”any means necessary.”
We can blame racism here, but classism needs to also be a part of the conversation. With the awareness being elevated around education by organizations like Better Outcomes for OUR Kids (www.BookATL.org), we now know that Black and Brown children living in underserved communities can achieve and excel academically.
There are many studies that have proven that a child can be extremely intelligent and still be unable to read. There is a difference between being intelligent and educated. Einstein, who was considered a scientific genius, was placed in special education classes during his childhood. He would often share that, “Everybody is a genius, but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will believe its whole life that it is stupid.”
What he made clear was that a world-class education can properly nurture a child’s inner genius. There far too many examples of high-performing charter schools serving this demographic. And we should try to learn from these schools and incorporate their successful strategies.
Nelson Mandela stated, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.” So what we must conclude is if our children are excelling at these high-performing schools, then why are there still failing schools? And who is truly failing them? I now must conclude that we are.
—kamaria finch, founder of Harriet Tubman School