"Segregation" wherever you look: Long ago and far away, we visited a neighborhood elementary school in North Carolina's fourth most populous city.
We were there to attend the annual schoolwide spelling bee, in which a relative of ours, a third-grader at the time, would be competing that day. We'd visited the school three years before, spending an hour or two in this young person's kindergarten class.
Actually, it wasn't that long ago, or even that far away. We visited that kindergarten class in the spring of 2012 (we think).
"Teacher" made us read a story—one of their favorites, we were told—to the young scholars that day. We recall the faces of the two little girls who weren't yet speaking English.
We can still see another little girl—a little girl who was bilingual—scrambling over desks and chairs to cup her hands and whisper in the ear of one of these classmates, keeping her apprised of what was being said right there in her new classroom, which was also in her new country.
Our relative was the other girl who served as a translator in this kindergarten class. She could be "identified" several ways in our modern-day public school taxonomy, but if memory serves—the state of North Carolina used to provide more demographic information than it seems to provide today—the demographics of this school broke down much like this:
Student enrollment, Public School DBased on the standard data, this school was lower-income than the average North Carolina school. There were some professors' kids in the school, but there were also kids from public housing, along with some new arrivals who weren't yet speaking English.
White kids: 33 percent
Black kids: 33 percent
Hispanic kids: 33 percent
The day we attended the spelling bee, we thought we'd died and gone to heaven.
We'd assumed we'd be in a small room with some spelling bee contestants and a handful of parents. In fact, the spelling bee was conducted as a schoolwide assembly, with every kid in the school present in the auditorium.
Every kid in the school was there. As someone who spent a dozen years in the Baltimore schools of the 1970s and 1980s, we thought the atmosphere in the room was little short of amazing.
Children chattered arm in arm with other kids from the planet's various peoples. When the teacher on the stage introduced "your grade-by-grade spelling champions," the room went wild.
We thought we'd died and gone to heaven whenever we went to that school. Two years later, we attended another schoolwide bee (we'd been snowed out the year before); we ended up in an anteroom as the principal offered impressive remarks about the way the school had assembled reading materials for kids on all reading levels.
The last time the state let us know, this school was producing test results below North Carolina's averages. This tended to jibe with its income levels, but it struck us as amazing given the atmosphere of the school and the quality of what we'd heard that principal saying.
We thought we'd died and gone to heaven whenever we went to that school. Luckily, Professors Orfield and Kucsera were willing to tell us where we'd actually been.
As it turns out, our young relative had been consigned to a segregated school! We know that because, out in Westwood 90095, the professors have redefined the historically fraught term in the manner shown below.
They do so on page 32 of this widely-cited report:
KUCSERA AND ORFIELD (2014): We also explore school segregation patterns by the proportion or concentration of each racial group in segregated schools (50-100% of the student body are students of color), intensely segregated schools (90-100% of the student body are students of color), and apartheid schools (99-100% of the schools are students of color). Such schools, especially hypersegregated and apartheid schools[,] are nearly always associated with stark gaps in educational opportunity. To provide estimates of diverse environments, we calculate the proportion of each racial group in multiracial schools (schools with any three races representing 10% or more of the total student body).According to these conceptual giants, our "segregated schools" have come a long way, baby!
In Tuesday's report, we showed you what such schools looked like in the gruesome old days, when Governor Wallace issued his famous battle cry:
"Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever!"
That was a more gruesome era. As we showed you yesterday, the "segregated schools" Wallace had in mind looked like these, as was required by law:
Student enrollment, Public School B (1963)That's what the term meant to Wallace. But now, we've truly come a long way. According to the Westwood Two, "segregation now" also looks like this:
White kids: 100 percent
Black kids: 0 percent
Student enrollment, Public School C (1963)
White kids: 0 percent
Black kids: 100 percent
Student enrollment, Public School D (2012)Somewhat strangely, that's "segregation" too. That's "segregation" now!
White kids: 33 percent
Black kids: 33 percent
Hispanic kids: 33 percent
Does it make sense to speak and think this way? We'd say it very clearly does 1) if you want to maintain use of the term "segregation" forever; and 2) if you want to keep electing people like Donald J. Trump.
According to the Westwood Two, a public school is "segregated" if 50 percent (or fewer) of its students are "white." To let you decide if you think that makes sense, let's consider some other examples.
Our tribe's ability to perform moral greatness has come a long way, baby! Thanks to our redefinition of terms, we can now mount the ramparts and declare these schools "segregated:"
Student enrollment, Public School EThanks to the professoriate, they're "segregated" now too! So, of course, are these schools:
White kids: 50 percent
Black kids: 50 percent
Student enrollment, Public School F
White kids: 40 percent
Black kids: 30 percent
Hispanic kids: 30 percent
Student enrollment, Public School GAt long last, it can be said! If a "black" kid gets stuck in Public School H, he or she has been consigned to a segregated school!
White kids: 25 percent
Black kids: 25 percent
Hispanic kids: 25 percent
Asian-American kids: 25 percent
Student enrollment, Public School H
White kids: 40 percent
Asian-American kids: 40 percent
Black kids: 20percent
Luckily, there are still some schools which aren't segregated. According to the professors' report, one such school would be this:
Student enrollment, Public School IAccording to the professors' text, that school isn't segregated! We need more schools like that!
White kids: 99 percent
Black kids: 1 percent
Public School I isn't segregated. Neither is Public School J:
Student enrollment, Public School JThat school isn't segregated either. Why can't we have more such schools?
White kids: 70 percent
Asian-American kids: 30 percent
Does it make sense when widely-cited "progressive" academics think and behave in these ways? In theory, opinions may differ.
On the bright side, such thinking lets us liberals engage in one of our favorite pastimes—performative moral grandeur. We get to steal valor from those who went before. We get to pretend that we are fighting the same brave fight against a famous old devil.
(As we'll see next week, we aren't.)
On the down side, behavior like this—and behavior like this is amazingly common among the professoriate—routinely exposes liberals and progressives to fairly convincing nationwide ridicule.
The Others can see how addled we are. They decide to go to the polls and vote for Donald J. Trump. That's how stupid The Others are, just as they always have been!
For what it's worth, leading anthropologists say that our species was always wired to think and behave in such tribalized ways. These experts report to us from the years which follow the global conflagration they glumly describe as Mister Trump's War. They speak to us through nocturnal submissions which the haters refer to as dreams.
We liberals will be inclined to say that the professors have good intentions. We live a long way from Westwood 90059, so it's hard for us to tell.
That said, the professors' decision to redefine the world does have a (darkly) comical aspect. We'll explore that found humor tomorrow, but our award-winning exploration will derive from data like these:
United States student enrollment, September 2014Oh. Our. God. Perhaps you can see where those data start to take us:
White kids: 24.9 million (49.5%)
Black kids: 7.8 million (15.5%)
Hispanic kids: 12.8 million (25.4%)
Asian-American kids: 2.6 million (5.2%)
Biracial kids: 1.6 million (3.2%)
Native American kids: 0.5 million (0.9%)
Total enrollment: 50.3 million
The professors issued their report in March 2014. If a school was less than 50 percent white, that school was "segregated."
Six months later, the nation's students went back to school and the NCES called the roll. As you can see from those national data, those students were living in a nation where the average public school was now less than half white!
"Segregation forever," Governor Wallace declared. When he made this stirring statement, he was referring to the practice of segregation.
He wanted to keep the practice forever. Fetishizing a highly fraught term, the professors have turned a somewhat similar trick with the word "segregation."
"Every man a king," Huey Long once said. In a perfect, racially balanced world, every school would now be "segregated!" Or so the professors now said.
Tomorrow: Unintentional humor amid a journey to Lake Wobegon
All next week: Why in the world does the state of New York have "the most segregated schools?"
Reposting the bulk of a comment from yesterday:ReplyDelete
Somerby’s hypothetical school
(Student enrollment, Public School D (2012)
White kids: 33 percent
Black kids: 33 percent
Hispanic kids: 33 percent)
would be classified as “multi-racial”. From p33 of the report:
“These findings reflect dramatic changes in the composition of New York schools. Whites and blacks together accounted for 83% of the state total in 1990 and thus, it is not
surprising that desegregation policy was framed mostly as a black-white issue in New York. But now, over 30% of students come from other racial or ethnic backgrounds. As
we will soon discuss in a subsequent section, many school districts have three or more
racial and ethnic groups, including hundreds of districts that were virtually all white during the civil rights era.”
At least Somerby could acknowledge that the report deals with just such schools, and treats them separately from the other “segregated” categories.
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You're over-analyzing, dear Bob, and you're over-analyzing it out of context.ReplyDelete
You're in a liberal-zombie cult, with no place for common sense.
Quite simply, your zombie-cult kingpins are trying to stir shit up, to agitate their pet zombies.
The idea is to have a higher zombie turnout in the next election, to grab more power, and to advance the globalist agenda of their sponsors. That's all.
Somerby objects to the word “segregation” being used, and he objects to defining “segregated” to mean “50-100%” students of color.ReplyDelete
The point of the classification system, which includes “multiracial”, “50-100% students of color”, “90-100% students of color”, and “99-100% students of color”, is to identify trends. The study examines three points in time, 1989, 1999, and 2010. In the section dealing with New York City, the study does not limit itself to just New York City proper; it also looks at the surrounding metro area. It also drills down into individual school districts. The trend clearly shows that as this process continues, it is associated with a greater segregation by income, and worsening academic achievement, mainly for black and Latino students.
It’s an academic study, and doesn’t attempt to provide reasons or blame for what it calls “segregation”. Somerby seems to take offense at the word, or even the notion that it should be studied in ways such as the civil rights project has done. Presumably, he thinks that such a study is irrelevant at best, because we have to deal with the situation as it exists on the ground and provide the best schools regardless of their racial composition. While this is certainly true as far as it goes, it is also important to identify the underlying processes which create or exacerbate problems with the education of students of color. The study provides data that can be used to examine such processes.
At worst, Somerby seems to feel that the use of the word segregation is offensive and tribal, meant to bolster someone’s liberal bona fides (“Fetishizing a highly fraught term”). That is unfair, but more importantly, it is an ascription of motive to academic researchers who are trying to examine an important aspect of our schools. Somerby’s objection to the word segregation and his denigration of the professors smacks of a desire to censor such language and such studies. Perhaps Somerby’s critique would disappear if the professors just found a different word.
Let me type this slowly so you can understand:ReplyDelete
I masturbate constantly to internet porn.
I think this proves my point.
Somerby keeps referring to Westwood's zipcode as 90095. That isn't quite right. UCLA's zipcode is 90095 (for the campus) but Westwood's zipcode is 90024. Westwood is the city adjacent to and encompassing the campus of UCLA (which is very large) but the school has its own zipcode because of the large amount of mail it receives.ReplyDelete
It's a small thing, but he keeps repeating it, so it is perhaps better to get it right. Westwood is not synonymous with UCLA, because there is a lot happening in Westwood besides the university. There are also wealthy residential areas adjacent to the campus and Westwood serves their needs. Los Angeles is a large city, so the presence of a university does not dominate the surroundings the way it would in a small college town. Westwood is a neighborhood embedded in the greater Los Angeles area. Westwood Village is student friendly.
Wikipedia says [LINK]:Delete
Beverly Hills, 90210 is an American teen drama television series created by Darren Star and produced by Aaron Spelling under his production company Spelling Television. The series ran for ten seasons on Fox from October 4, 1990, to May 17, 2000, and is the longest-running show produced by Spelling.
It is the first of six television series in the Beverly Hills, 90210 franchise and follows the lives of a group of friends living in the upscale and star-studded community of Beverly Hills, California, as they transition from high school to college and into the adult world. "90210" refers to one of the city's five ZIP codes.
Wikipedia says [LINK]:
Westwood was developed on the lands of the historic Wolfskill Ranch, a 3,000-acre (12 km2) parcel that was purchased by Arthur Letts, the successful founder of the Broadway, and Bullock's department stores, in 1919.
Upon Arthur Lett's death, his son-in-law, Harold Janss, vice president of Janss Investment Company, inherited the land and developed the area and started advertising for new homes in 1922.
The Los Angeles Times reported the news: "Westwood, the subdivision of the Wolfskill Ranch, 3,300 acres (13 km2) of scenic territory between the city and Santa Monica, is to be opened to homeseekers and investors today by the Janss Investment Company.
The tract comprises approximately 1000 residential and business lots, situated west of the Los Angeles Country Club on Santa Monica Boulevard and the Rancho Country Club on Pico Boulevard."
Meanwhile, the Southern Branch of the University of California had been established on Vermont Avenue in Los Angeles, where enrollment expanded so rapidly that by 1925 the institution had outgrown the site. The selection of a new campus in the Westwood hills was announced on March 21, 1925.
The owners of the estate, the Janss brothers, agreed to sell the property for approximately $1 million ($12 million in 2018 dollars), less than one-third the land's value. Municipal bond measures passed by Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills and Venice provided for that amount. Proposition 10, a state bond measure passed that year, provided $3 million for construction. Thus the predecessor of the University of California, Los Angeles, was established in Westwood and opened in 1929.
Not sure why you threw in the quote about Beverly Hills. The 5 zip codes referred to in that quote are all in Beverly Hills, which is a separate city from Los Angeles. Los Angeles has 98 zipcodes, much more than 5. In contrast, Westwood is currently still part of Los Angeles, a neighborhood, not a distinct city like Beverly Hills or Santa Monica or Venice. Hollywood is a neighborhood but West Hollywood is a city because they took a vote and incorporated separate from Los Angeles.Delete
I just objected to Somerby repeatedly saying that 90095 was the zipcode for Westwood. It isn't. It is a zipcode solely dedicated to the campus of UCLA. UCI has a similar situation with respect to the adjacent Irvine "village" of Turtle Rock. UCSD may be similarly distinct from La Jolla (don't know for sure).
Not sure why you threw in the quote about Beverly Hills.Delete
Really... you're not sure why? Somerby is skewering Kucsera and Orfield with a pop culture allusion. An allusion to what exactly? We'll make this an open book test- take your best guess. And going forward, consider keeping your pedantic urges to yourself.
OK, I lied. I’m not typing this slowly so you can understand. I’m typing this slowly because the keyboard is sticky.Delete
For the reason I gave above.
My only point is that I’m the real deadrat’s biggest fan. All I crave is his attention.
Isn't Somerby tiptoeing around the issue? In areas where the schools have large numbers of black and Hispanic kids, white parents are taking their kids out of public schools and putting them in mostly white private schools or homeschooling them. This isn't good for the white kids and it isn't good for the mostly minority public schools either.ReplyDelete
He continually conflates the quality of a school with the performance of the kids. If a school served only developmentally disabled children, would it be judged a bad school because the students didn't do well on standardized tests? Why then are schools with large numbers of poor and disadvantaged kids expected to produce the same results as schools with high income advantaged students?
My grandson was expected to be able to write and do arithmetic in kindergarten. How will an immigrant child or a child who speaks only Spanish be able to do that, and how will that child catch up? There might be two such children in Somerby's anecdotal kindergarten visit, but there will be none in the school that the white kids have fled to.
Somerby never actually states his points, but it seems he was asking us to consider that schools appear to be excellent when you visit them but appear less so when you look at the numbers. I think that is Somerby were paying more attention, he might notice the kids in each classroom who are not participating fully, not paying attention, not working up to the top achievers, and understand that those kids produce the lower means that he seems to be solely concern with, as if that were the best measure of success for our schools.
Has a child with a low NAEP score really learned nothing? Will his life be shit? Will he never catch up? Is he always black or Hispanic and never white or Asian?
Why doesn't Somerby talk about education instead of NAEP?
>>>In areas where the schools have large numbers of black and Hispanic kids, white parents are taking their kids out of public schools and putting them in mostly white private schools or homeschooling them. This isn't good for the white kids...Delete
Give me the reasons "this isn't good for white kids." For starters, how do you know the "white kids" end up as poorer performers academically as a result of going to private school? What's this evidence you have that such kids end up less successful as adults?
>>>My grandson was expected to be able to write and do arithmetic in kindergarten. How will an immigrant child or a child who speaks only Spanish be able to do that, and how will that child catch up?...
What are the stats on how students, for whom English is their second language when they enter kindergarten, end up performing relative to the rest of the student population by the end of their secondary education careers? Specifically, how do they end up performing when compared with native English speakers from households with the same income at the time they started kindergarten? Does anyone reading this thread know? I don't.
>>>Why... are schools with large numbers of poor and disadvantaged kids expected to produce the same results as schools with high income advantaged students?
On the one hand, it seems from the stats Somerby recently posted that Asian-American students from economically disadvantaged households do at least as well as all white kids as a group, and that's including the subset of Jewish white kids who, I suspect, raise the white group's average. On the other hand, who wouldn't expect students from more socio-economically advantageous backgrounds to outperform their counterparts academically over the course of their primary and secondary school years?
Given this expectation, why wouldn't improving the socio-economic circumstances of the disadvantaged be the goal for improving student academic outcomes? I have a theory as to why the focus is on "segregation" but I'm curious as to why 1:56 PM, someone who sounds like a bona fide Democratic liberal, thinks the priority to improve black and Hispanic student performance in school and their prospects for success in later life should be to racially integrate each public school instead of, say, pushing for a $15/hr minimum wage, single payer health care, government provided pre-K child care, and such.
As to the stats Somerby posted, I was referring to those from the New York City public schools. I wouldn't expect the scores of the subset of white kids who are Jewish to raise the average scores of all white students nationwide much.Delete
It's almost as if none of the actual facts matter, and the framing is all built around demonizing whites.ReplyDelete
I'm sure that can't be it, though.
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