All Articles Tagged "african-american students"
A new study that began tracking 1,363 New York City kindergartners who received tuition vouchers from the School Choice Scholarships Foundation in 1997 found that the African-American students were 24 percent more likely to enroll in college than those who didn’t receive the voucher. A total of 2,642 students were involved in the research, which continued through 2011. The remaining students were in the “control group,” which didn’t receive vouchers. The students who got the vouchers were selected via lottery. All of the students came from disadvantaged backgrounds. The researchers were able to follow about 99 percent of all the students.
“[T]he only difference between the groups was the luck of the draw, the gold standard in research design,” wrote the researchers Matthew Chingos and Paul Peterson in an op-ed published today in The Wall Street Journal. Chingos is a fellow at the Brookings Institution’s Brown Center on Education Policy; Peterson is a Harvard government professor and director of the school’s program on education policy and governance.
The researchers said they saw no significant difference for Hispanic students, while there weren’t enough Asian or white students for analysis. However, for African-American students, the difference was marked: both part-time and full-time enrollment was up 24 percent, but full-time enrollment on its own was up 31 percent. At colleges that seek out SAT scores of 1,100 or higher was up, enrollment went from three percent to eight percent. Just over one-third of black students who didn’t receive a voucher (36 percent) enrolled in college.
The op-ed, which presumes that President Obama is opposed to vouchers because of “opposition… from powerful teachers unions,” notes that the cost of getting these results was only $4,200 per student over the course of three years. Many believe the study shows the benefits of vouchers.
The Christian Science Monitor also took a closer look at the research and came up with a few points of contention: the study doesn’t look at what happened to students who left the voucher program; the limited scope of the research and its methodology is a problem for some; and the “peer effect” of including low-income students in private schools at greater numbers isn’t taken into account. The researcher acknowledge some of these weaknesses.
As the article points out, vouchers and school choice is a very “politicized” topic in this country right now. So there are lots of issues wrapped up in this besides education.
Separately but related, a Gallup poll released this week found that 29 percent of people think No Child Left Behind has made education worse in the country while 38 percent think it hasn’t really made a difference. Of those who said they’re “very familiar” with the law, 48 percent said it made education worse.
(Huffington Post) — Black and Latino students are disproportionately more likely to experience harsher punishments by schools for infractions and misbehaviors, according to a new report by the National Education Policy Center. At times, the punishments are unrelated to student safety. While past research has suggested that zero-tolerance discipline that removes troublemakers can improve the learning environment for and safety of well behaved students, the NEPC reports that it’s not necessarily the case. A 2004 study in Indiana showed that most suspensions — 95 percent – were issued for violations like disruptive behavior, while just 5 percent of suspensions were for dangerous behavior like weapons possession. The report was issued today as part of the Dignity in Schools Campaign’s National Week of Action. It’s authored by Daniel Losen, senior education law and policy associate for the Civil Rights Project at the University of California, Los Angeles. “Although our society is more diverse than ever before, schools today are more segregated than they were 30 years ago,” NEPC Director Kevin Welner said in a statement Wednesday. “It’s important to understand the link between diversity, discipline and academic achievement…. being kicked-out leads to becoming a dropout.”
When it comes to education, students in the African-American and Hispanic communities are the least likely to examine the rewards that a science, technology, engineering and math (“STEM”) degree can provide. With the U.S overall poverty rate at 15.1 percent and the rates of the African-American and Hispanic communities at 27.4 and 26.6 percent respectively, a STEM education is positive option that would assist those students (and their families) from getting out of poverty.
Yet, statistics show that few African-American and Hispanic students are choosing to go to college and the ones that do end up attending, don’t appear to major in STEM fields. Last week, the Department of Commerce reported that in 2009 alone, 22 percent of non-Hispanic blacks and 14 percent of Hispanics hold bachelor’s degrees. While 54 percent of Asians and 35 percent of non-Hispanic whites receive a college education. Also, when it comes to those African-American and Hispanic students that do graduate, approximately 17 percent of black non-Hispanic students and 21 percent of Hispanic students majored in STEM disciplines.
Especially since the potential earning power for some STEM grads can be six-figures or higher, with average starting salaries for engineers in Silicon Valley starting at $98,000 – the options for students would be basically endless. At the same time, efforts have been slow when it comes to improving the resources needed for STEM education in low-income school districts, which are primarily filled with high quantities of African-American and Hispanic students.
Which leaves those that graduate with non-STEM degrees out in the workforce in a horrible economy trying to make their way or relying on unpaid internships. However, students that come from low-income families, pursuing an unpaid internship is more than likely not a feasible option.
At the same time, there is concern that if students were pushed to pursue only STEM pursuits forsaking the arts and other non-STEM disciples, that students would be trained to be drones instead of innovators.
So what is the educational holdup? Well first, many of the nation’s public schools are not preparing students to be innovators and with No Child Left Behind still in effect, schools are only looking to teach what is needed for the tests and little else. Not to mention the basic annihilation of arts education in schools, which have been felt the most in minority communities. While, we shouldn’t discount the importance of STEM classes, we also must focus on providing an all-inclusive learning environment for today’s youth, so they become well-rounded individuals. In order to enable African-Americans and Hispanic students to be better prepared for jobs as innovators, improving STEM education is not the only thing that matters.
Cynthia Wright is an avid lover of all things geeky. When she isn’t freelancing, she can be found on her blog BGA Life and on Twitter at @cynisright.
“I didn’t want to live the rest of my life hating Mondays,” Dr. Pamela Ellis, founder and principal consultant of Compass Education Strategies said about her career switch from business to education. Dr. Ellis, once a corporate financier, is now known as the Education Doctor who uses her research acumen to help students from all walks of life attain solid educations. “Access. Thrive. Graduate!” is the motto of Compass Education Strategies, her business, which employs techniques like in depth knowledge of education options and testing for personality traits to prepare her clients for college. She also works directly with schools systems and non-profits to assist kids. Through her work, Dr. Ellis stresses the importance of college for students of color, particularly black men, who sometimes need more support to graduate.
Dr. Pamela Ellis spoke with The Atlanta Post about her background, strategies, and passionate vision, which includes every child succeeding in the classroom.
Tell us about your background and how you came to be called The Education Doctor.
I have been working in education research for the past thirteen years — with school districts, state education agencies, and different nonprofit organizations. As part of this work, I go out into classrooms — and you know how students are. They say whatever is on their minds. In schools people refer to me as Dr. Ellis, so if students asked, “Doctor? What are you a doctor of?,” I would say to them, “I’m the education doctor!”
Kids understand what a medical doctor is, but to explain a PhD… they wouldn’t get that. So I had to put it in simple terms that they would understand. That’s how the name came about and it just stuck. Recently I got the name trademarked so that I can use it for my business.
I received my doctorate from Stanford several years ago. I worked in corporate America primarily before I started doing education in corporate finance and investment banking.
(Examiner) — If Chicago minority graduation rates for African Americans can improve, why can’t the same be said for Latinos? Here is an interesting topic that was picked up over the weekend: In 2005, a study by the Chicago Urban League found that only 38 percent of African American males graduated from high school in the city of Chicago. In 2011, a study by the African American Libertarian Alliance finds that 43 percent of African American males graduate from high school. 56 percent of African American females graduate high school. In total, half of the African American population of students in Chicago graduate high school.
(Washington Examiner) — Step into the brand new Wilson High in Tenleytown and you might think you are in a different city’s public schools. Nearly half the students are white; and as the teaching staff improves and local families get a load of the new facilities, more white parents from the neighborhood will certainly send their precious offspring to Wilson. It might not be too surprising that white families are choosing Wilson. It is, after all, center stage in Upper Caucasia. But white parents across Washington, D.C. are putting their children in public schools, from Shaw to Capitol Hill. Anacostia is next. News flash: District of Columbia Public Schools are becoming integrated ?– with white people. In D.C. today, diversity means adding Caucasians.
(News One) — According to a Yourblackworld.com survey, 42 percent of black college graduates had never had one black professor in four years of college. Seventy-four percent only had one black professor in a field outside of Africana studies. Dr. Boyce Watkins was included in that 42 percent. In his four years of undergraduate studies, and seven years obtaining his Master’s and PhD, Watkins claims he never had one black professor. Watkins writes: “During a four-year college career, most students take roughly 40 courses. Personally, I went to graduate school for another seven years after college, taking an additional 40 to 50 more classes. During my entire undergraduate, masters and doctoral experience, I never had one African American professor.”
by Selam Aster
Historically Black Colleges and Universities play a far different role today then they did well over a century ago. Times have changed, and so have the 105 HBCUs that still exist today. Recently, the Wall Street Journal illuminated the fact that more than 17 percent of the students in attendance are not Black. That number is not random.
Recruiters from top HBCUs are seeking out to diversify their enrollments. As competition has become stiff for Black students across the country, many of these schools can’t rely solely on Black students to fill up their classrooms. As private colleges, they still heavily rely on tuition to maintain and expand. Not only is there more competition to attract the top Black students but there is even more competition to attract mid-level students and those seeking vocational degrees as online schools have inundated education market in the past decade.
Michael Sorrell, president of Paul Quinn College in Dallas, has made an extra effort at recruiting by offering “presidential scholarships,” to students of all races. Of the 20 students that were selected to receive the scholarship, six have been Hispanic or white. Offering scholarships to non-Black students may raise some questions but on a publicity scale, the move definitely will help promote the school’s attractiveness to non-Black students.
With HBCUs looking to recruit talent across the board, many say their number one commitment is still providing a complementary and inspiring learning environment for Black students, who would otherwise represent the minority at other schools. “Black colleges do a good job by another measure, in educating students who enroll with less money and lower college-entrance test scores, on average, than incoming freshmen at other schools, Marybeth Gasman, professor of higher education at the University of Pennsylvania’s graduate school of education told the Wall Street Journal. “Historically black colleges and universities enroll 16% of all black undergrads, but award 25% of the bachelor’s degrees received by African Americans.”
(Brooklyn Eagle) — Brooklyn College is one of the top degree-granting institutions in the country for students from minority backgrounds, according to Diverse, a magazine dedicated to issues of diversity in higher education. Compiled annually, Diverse’s Top 100 List ranks the U.S. colleges and universities that confer the most degrees to minority students. With more than 100 languages spoken on campus and nearly as many countries represented among its student body, Brooklyn College is one of the nation’s most diverse colleges.
(Rolling Out) — The six-year study looked at the effect of zero tolerance policies in Texas public schools and found:
- One million students were suspended or expelled, and those students who were disciplined this way were also more likely to drop out or have to repeat a grade.
- 83 percent of black males had at least one disciplinary action on their record which ended with them being removed from school compared to 59 percent of white males. 70 percent of black female students and 37 percent of white female students had been disciplined. ( White females were often not disciplined for identical offenses committed by black females.)