Report: Our High Schools Might Not Adequately Prepare Dropouts For Unemployment...The Onion
- Progressives have a lot of cards in their deck. But the card they enjoy dealing out with relish is the race card. In the last month, the race card has been dealt repeatedly during the Sterling and Bundy episodes.
- However, along with the gender, sexual orientation, and income inequality cards, perhaps the race card illustrates perfectly their striking hypocrisy. This has been clearly in evidence in many urban school districts where many minority students have been subjugated to failing and segregated schools for decades. As I reported several months ago, in New York City alone, at 53 schools, no African American students passed the state's recent math exams. At 48 schools, no Hispanics passed the same test. Similar data was found in other schools and in other studies, e.g. English language proficiency. In fact, in 69 schools, English proficiency was 3% or less. This achievement gap is conspicuous even on the national level. For example, drop-out rates for minority students in Trenton, N.J. is approximately 60%, in Baltimore it's 65%, in Cleveland it's also about 65%.
- And this is certainly unfortunate and a disgrace considering the facts reveal that most minorities excel in good performing schools. For example, in NYC Catholic parochial schools, minority graduation rates are almost 100% with 98% moving on to college (NYC Catholic parochial schools minority population stands at approximately 15%). And while there are some charter schools that perform no better than public schools, there are many charters that outperform their public school counterparts. Success Academy had 82% of its students passing the state's math exams. For the public schools, it was 30%. In other words, minority students learn well because they are at many other schools outside of the public school system. In addition, many of the better performing schools are not hamstrung by union contracts or the overwhelming bureaucracy found in the public school system. This fact was substantiated by Fahari Academy in NYC. It's a charter completely staff by the United Federation of Teachers. It was rated the single-worst school in the entire city. After Fahari unionized, only 7% passed the English state test down from 40% the previous year. In math, the students didn't perform much better with only 10% passing, down from 60% the previous year.
- And the jobs picture is not much better for minorities. Most recent data from the Department of Labor reports that unemployment among blacks is about 13% or double the rate among whites. Among Hispanics, the rate hovers around 9%. And the rates among minority youth---depending on the geographic area---exceed 50%.
- In the face of all this failure, total expenditures to elementary and secondary schools amount to about $640B a year or $12,800 per public school student. Since the start of the recession, the federal government has spent over $11B on just one jobs program (The Workforce Investment Act). The feds have approximately 50 federal employment and training programs that cost the American taxpayer $18B a year.
- As you review this data, you also need to know that, on average, school superintendents earn approximately $162,000 per year. Teachers about $55,000.00. In addition, in many states, retired school administrators still ride the gravy train funded by taxpayers. In California alone, those receiving pensions exceeding $100K a year rose by 650% between 2005 and 2011.
- So as progressives keep flashing the race card (keep in mind, most city governments that are failing are run by progressive democrats), it's they who continue to subjugate minorities into failing schools and no jobs. It's clear who is failing. It's even clearer who is suffering.
Sources for this post include, but are not limited to, The NY Post, The NY Daily News, The Labor Department, The NY Times, CATO Institute, Great Schools, Dept. of Education, and Institute of Education Sciences.