Tuesday, October 02, 2007


why don't black people in this area with young children care about their child's education? recently my daughter's school had their back-to-school-night. she goes to a school made up of predominantly black and hispanic. the white students are the minority. in her class of 25 students, only 3 are white.

when we got to back-to-school night, the only parents there from my daughter's class were the white ones. of 25 students, only the parents of the 3 white students showed up (and us, of course)? why don't black parents want to be involved and see what's going on at their kid's school? is school just a daycare option for them?

howcome the predominantly white public schools thrive while the opposites don't? one of the main reasons why i even have my daughter there is because i don't want to put her into a school of all white people and have her feel like she's "missing" something and then go to the other extreme trying to "be black" by emulating rappers and other black lowlifes who contribute to the demise of black culture and perception.

i prettymuch believe that if she goes to the type of school she's at, surrounded by black community, she will see the negative aspects (as well as the positives) and wont think that being thuggish and ghetto is so exciting.


Anonymous said...

get your kid out of that school!!! he will only think that this thug life that he sees is a glamorous one, because the idiot children that attend this school will make your son think they are great. send him to the white school! black people before us fought for the right to attend white schools so that they could have the same opportunity as the white kids!

a said...

If they're at a school where the parents are largely uninvolved, maybe you should revisit why you have your kids there. Maybe you could send them to a school that is thriving and involve them in the black community in other ways.

I can understand wanting your kids to look around and feel as though they fit in, but you are in a place where education doesn't seem to be a priority. If the parents don't care that much, that attitude is going to trickle down to their kids, too. Surely your children will pick up on it--kids are quick to notice those things.

What's more important? Seeing other black or biracial faces around you (which there still would be at another school), or having the involvement and support of community, and a focus on education?

Don't be so sure your kids would feel like they are out of place in a school with mostly white kids. Different background and cultural experiences? Yes. But that they don't belong? Not necessarily, especially with your guidance and support to reaffirm that they belong wherever they are.

Anonymous said...

Cardiowhore needs to seriously be quiet. How can you call children idiots? THEY aren't the idiots and I'm sure not all of those kids are into "thug life" or whatever. THOSE kids need to be "rescued" too and they too deserve to see what else life has to offer...

And, trust me, just because you're white and you go to a predominantly white school doesn't mean everything's peachy and okay. Trust me - I should know. I went to one.

The vibe of your post just truly rubs me the wrong way. You seem so very ignorant.

lisablisa@gmail.com said...

I agree with anon re: cardiowhore... good grief! Calling young children idiots because their parents didn't attend curriculum night?! Perhaps the parents are idiots for not investing time in the school system or perhaps these parents are working two jobs to keep a roof over the family. My mom never made it to parents' night because she was a single parent struggling to provide for us. She did an amazing job and although she never made it to a single curriculum night all five of her children hold college degrees and/or advanced degrees, not a thug or single parent among us, all home owners, tax payers responsible citizens. Walk a mile in the shoes of another before you judge her journey.

another anon said...

Just wondering...is this the first curriculum night you have attended? If not, did the black parents attend the previous ones? Are they generally speaking - involved in most of the school activities? If they NEVER show up for any school activity then as someone said you might want to re-think your kids' schooling options. This is hard to say but - just because you are hanging out with blacks does not mean you automatically connect with all of them. There are blacks out there (and whites too, trust me) who simply cannot be bothered to do these things but there are also conversely, many who will. It may be that you have put your kids in a school where that type of community fellowship is not a priority. It would be ok if some of them regularly attended school activities but if NONE of them do...sadly the school might be too "ghetto" for you. I say that without irony, sarcasm or mockery.

Leigh Anne said...

Black girl, I hear what you're saying about wanting to raise your kids as best you can and wanting a stable home life, strong racial identity and a good education... But maybe it's time to rethink that school. The first few years of schooling are important, more so than people realise.

The school you send them to now impacts what middle school they go to, what high school they go to, and ultimately what college they go to!

You've mentioned before that you don't want to do the snooty private school thing, but perhaps there's a middle ground? Somewhere not too snooty but not too ghetto either...

Anyway, I hope you'll keep us updated on what you eventually decide!

Aly Cat 121 said...

There are all other types of schools that have predominately black children where the parents participate about 90% of the time. But you have to pay money for your children to attend. And it's not cheap to send children to school when the money is coming out of your paycheck every month.

And I know it must be really hard to even try to get your children into a different school because of all the red-tape you have to go through in order for you children to attend a school outside of their district (assuming they attend public school). Not to mention school districts are really cracking down on children who don't live in the area but attend their schools. So could you even change their schools if you wanted too? (wait lists, out of district transfers, etc).

In your case, maybe becoming active in the PTA and being more active yourself could possibly excite others into being more active, or at least the other black parents.

Anonymous said...

I dont care what the annonymous think! I speak from the heart! I grew up in this kind of negative environment and yes!!! Ignorant parents usually raise ignorant children simply because the children know nothing diffrent. I am speaking of the majority,there are a few exceptions to the rule! I was one of those exceptions. Looking back on my past education and growibg up in a poor neighborhood and usually the teachers in these environments give up on the students because the parent has given up on the child! Long story short, just because you are a child does not exclude you from being an idiot!! Parents around the world teach their children morals and values!everyday! and these same age children are allowed to make right and wrong judgements, its funny how people dont expect children to have the capacity to judge good behavior from bad behavior, so to those that told me to shut up! you are the type of person that continue to help people be a burden on society by not having high expectations for our children! yes! kids can be idiots!

Golden Silence said...

I can't tell you the "correct" way to make sure your kids don't turn out "ghetto." One can be raised around the most ghetto environment ever but still turn out to be a productive member of society, and others can be raised middle class yet end up ghetto. I have two cousins who were raised middle class (and also in a strict religious upbringing) but one had a baby in high school and the other was bragging about smoking weed.

I think the only thing you can do is raise your children the best you can. If the school is that bad, find a way to transfer them. I don't think reverse psychology will make them not want to be ghetto. Instilling proper values and surrounding them around positive influences is a start in steering them from the ghetto life.

Anonymous said...

There are lots of options in PPS. PPS is a "school of choice" district. You can apply to any school, its a little late now but for next year.

There's also magnet schools, and some excellent charters. all free.

I would get out of that school.

That Black Girl said...

to the last "anonymous": i wish it were that easy. if it were, i'd have transferred my son a long time ago. unfortunately the schools are overpopulated and each school is only allowing 1 or 2 from other neighborhoods in. i've already tried it.

CullidMama said...

um, again. I'm not sure what school you're in. I know that you don't like the other black parents at that school and think they're not up to snuff for you. I doubt that there's anything they could do right for you.

As a former parent involvement coordinator, I know that there are many reasons parents don't come to back to school night. Studies have been done, strateigies developed. Basically, everyone's parent or guardian doesn't work the day shift, they may not feel welcome at that school (which is a big one), language barriers, foser parents or grandpaents overwhelmed with caring for too many children.

My child attends a school that is predominately filled with childen of color on the North Side where back to school night was standing room only. I really hate that your issues with fellow coloreds justifies some folks' attitude that blacks, especailly poor ones don't care about education. I think about the parents at Humboldt Elementary who organized to keep their school open when is was slated to close. I think about the black parents I see at North Portland Library, at swim lessons, at school board meetings. I'm not sure why you seek out folks that fulfill your beliefs about most black people.

You can always transfer to N/NE schools, because most gentrifiers send their kids to the charters and magnets. Holy Redeemer Catholic School is excellent if somewhat pricey these days.

Predominately white schools are hard for some children, it was hard for mine. But we really like and seek opportunities to see and make alliances with people of color. At our school we have buppie SAHMs, working class white/black/asian/latinos, some hipster parents, really everything. My experience in predominately white schools if that no differentiation was made, all blacks had to overcome the perception that they were untalented academically. My friend's kid adopted this tough-as-nails ghetto persona, which isn't who she is but what was expected of her at the magnet. One of her teacher suggested she go as Flavor Flav for Halloween last year. I would've lost it.

I honestly worry about your feelings towards other black folks in addition to living in a place like Portland will do to your kids self-concept. I wish you could create some bonds with the buppie black folks, cause as much as they're not my cup of tea, it might help you.

Anonymous said...

"Soar with the eagles or scratch like the chickens"...surround your children with what you want them to emmulate. YOU set the example SO much the first 4-8 years, but their peers take over from there. Make sure they are surrounded with the type of behavior, conduct, education level that you want them surrounded by. It doens't matter if it's white, black, yellow...or pink. You place far too much credence on the color of one's skin.

Anonymous said...

amen to anonymous above-- I'd try ot get your kid out of that school. THere are many experiences of being "black" --- you don't have to go to a predominantly black school to get it. Though all black americans are ALL individually unique, within America there are similarities of experience.. you want to prioritize your children's education now-- the world will teach them that they are black later, believe me.

The Black Sentinel said...

Wow, it seems that you and a lot of your guest who have replied are making a ton of assumptions about the children AND their parents. First of all was this back to school night for academic purposes? Was this like a parent teacher conference? If not then maybe the other parents had to work etc. Or would it be that just because they are Black they probably don't have jobs and are sitting in their ghetto fabulous homes thinking of all the bling to buy instead of going to the school?

Also, do you know all of these Blacks kids in the class to make the assertion that they are ghetto, or thug life wanna be's? It seems to me that these are just children and most of the people posting should not be assuming anything about their character or even that of their parents. We don't know what is going on.

And just for the record, I am Black and my son has gone to all White schools since elementary and he is now in high school and I have been the only parent to show up for school things such as back to school night, parents night etc. So it is by no means a Black thing.

: JustaDog said...

The very best thing black parents can do - if they really care about their children getting the best possible education - is to vote for candidates that support Charter schools and school vouchers.

It really has little to do with the racial make-up of a school and everything to do with government indoctrination union operated establishments.

Otherwise, they will be stuck in mediocre public schools that care more about the survival of unions than the students.

Having a choice is always better.

keep it real said...

You don't have the right or enough info. to say that black parents don't care about their children education just because they didn't show up. Are you really sending your child to that school by choice or fate? If it's by choice leave. If it's by fate join the P.T.A and make some changes because not all gang bangers, rappers and low life thugs are black

keep it real said...

Cardiowhore you need to chill with calling these children idiots. Are you stupid or what?

Anonymous said...

There are many reason why those black parents at the school do not particpate as well as black parents in general.

Like someone else pointed out, there are predom. black schools that have high parental participation like white schools and some with even more and they aren't private schools. It just depends on the school community.

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