The Florida State Board of Education passed a plan that sets goals for students in math and reading based upon their race.
On Tuesday, the board passed a revised strategic plan that says that by 2018, it wants 90 percent of Asian students, 88 percent of white students, 81 percent of Hispanics and 74 percent of black students to be reading at or above grade level. For math, the goals are 92 percent of Asian kids to be proficient, whites at 86 percent, Hispanics at 80 percent and blacks at 74 percent.
The plan has infuriated many community activists in Palm Beach County and across the state.
“To expect less from one demographic and more from another is just a little off-base,” Juan Lopez, magnet coordinator at John F. Kennedy Middle School in Riviera Beach, told the Palm Beach Post.
“Our kids, although they come from different socioeconomic backgrounds, they still have the ability to learn,” Lopez said. “To dumb down the expectations for one group, that seems a little unfair.”
Palm Beach County School Board vice-chairwoman Debra Robinson isn’t buying the rationale.
“I’m somewhere between complete and utter disgust and anger and disappointment with humanity,” Robinson told the Post. She said she has been receiving complaints from upset black and Hispanic parents since the state board took its action this week.
Robinson called the state board’s actions essentially “proclaiming racism” and said she wants Palm Beach County to continue to educate every child with the same expectations, regardless of race.
MP: Call me cynical, but I somehow think that Mr. Lopez, Ms. Robinson, and the black and Hispanic parents calling Florida’s new academic double-standards “racist” would probably all support race-based preferences/profiling in college admissions? But what’s the difference? Aren’t race-based preferences and double standards, aka affirmative action, for college admissions, just as “racist” as race-based double standards for academic outcomes for math and reading proficiencies for elementary and high school students?
HT: Morgan Frank