Pay attention because as formerly areas of the country that didn’t experience cultural and racial tensions in a previous generation are now being confronted with those issues in high schools (like the recent brawl at Tech High in St. Cloud, MN) they are scrambling to head off more trouble.
As the immigrant population continues to grow, will your community high school be discussing “diversity training” and developing “crew meetings,” “cultural think tanks,” and “civil rights teams?”
And, if that is something your family isn’t ready for, maybe it is time for home schooling!
This is an eye-opening story from the Portland Press Herald entitled:
As Maine schools grow more diverse, we need to talk
(A few snips, but read the whole thing!)
For students at Casco Bay High School, having conversations about topics that might be difficult to talk about is one of the most effective ways to ensure everyone feels welcome.
There are regular “courageous conversations” where students tackle big topics like gender, race and equity and daily “crew meetings” of small groups of students who check in with each other and break down the big discussions.
The school is part of one of Maine’s most racially diverse school districts – about 54 percent of students in the district are white, compared to 88 percent of students statewide.
More recent data from the Maine Department of Education shows that in the last 10 years there has been a 5 percent increase in nonwhite students and a 1 percent increase in the number of English language learners in Maine.
But pockets of the state, particularly those where new immigrants have settled, have seen growth that has far outpaced those numbers. Portland has seen a 13 percent increase in the racial diversity of its student body while Lewiston has seen a 20 percent increase.
I thought this might be the most informative paragraph in the whole long story:
And in Portland, students at Deering High School said the school’s high number of minority and economically disadvantaged students led people to spread rumors about the school that contributed to a sudden enrollment drop this fall.
Teachers unions and others making their living in the public school system must be quaking at the thought that people might just remove their kids from their schools. And, therein lies the urgent need they feel to expand “diversity training” ASAP.