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Monday, January 23, 2006

Teach Them Well...

Each day I discover more ways that my grandmother (that's not her in the picture, but the first to identify her gets 2 Loews Movie Passes) has influenced my interactions. I had to go to Kinko's this morning to pick up the campus newsletter and spent an hour in conversation with the customer service representative. She began the exchange by inquiring if she had seen me on television (people really watch my little show!). I told her yes.

"You were interviewing a young man with his own business (Bobby Brown, Jr.), she said.

From there we got on the subject of education and the lack of diversity among educators at her daughter's school. Having spent time as a substitute teacher in that particular school system, I knew the realities of her concern. She spoke of the differences in how black children are treated compared to white students.

"When the white students act up, very little is done to address the behavior.
When a student of color acts up, they are sent to the office or to stand in the
hallway. It's almost as if the white teachers are afraid to interact with our
children."

She went on to tell me that one of the few black teachers had been struck by a white third grader and nothing had been done to address the behavior. Can you imagine how quickly a black student would have been suspended for that action? That same teacher described ill-treatment by her white colleagues. They wouldn't include her in discussions or ask her to sit with them at lunch. I know it sounds a little childish, but I'm firmly believe that grown folks can act out the same way that children do.
So now I'm intrigued. Has anyone else been treated differently in the classroom because of color? I've never had any problem as an instructor, but I have heard from others that white students will challenge them.

Posted by Rodney :: 6:29 AM :: 3 Comments:

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