Many readers reacted skeptically to Thursday’s editorial, “Giving Up on 4-Year-Olds,” which describes a federal study showing that black school children are disproportionately singled out for suspension. Some readers argued that the disparity might be explained by class rather than race or by the fact that minority children committed more serious, suspension-worthy offenses.
Black children make up 18 percent of children in preschool, but almost half of students suspended more than once
Fast on the heels of a study exposing how police view black children as “less innocent” and “less young” than white children, a report released Friday by the Education Department’s civil rights arm reveals that public school officials suspend black students at a dramatically higher rate than white students.
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A tone-deaf inquiry into an Asian-American’s ethnic
origin. Cringe-inducing praise for how articulate a black student is. An unwanted
conversation about a Latino’s ability to speak English without an accent.
This is not exactly the language of traditional racism, but in an avalanche of
blogs, student discourse, campus theater and academic papers, they all reflect
the murky terrain of the social justice word du jour — microaggressions — used
to describe the subtle ways that racial, ethnic, gender and other stereotypes can
play out painfully in an increasingly diverse culture.
Racial minorities are more likely than white students to be suspended from
school, to have less access to rigorous math and science classes, and to be taught
by lower-paid teachers with less experience, according to comprehensive data
released Friday by the Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights.
In the first analysis in nearly 15 years of information from all of the country’s
97,000 public schools, the Education Department found a pattern of inequality
on a number of fronts, with race as the dividing factor.