Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education

Delpit: Other peoples children
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Author:  Beth Barber [ Sun Nov 26, 2006 4:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Delpit: Other peoples children

I was suprised by several things in this article.
One: I have always wondered what the answer was to "bridging the gap" between African-American children and white children in school. African-American children don't score as well on measures of achievement. Whenever test scores are publicized, this difference in scores always stands out. I have always wondered, What is the answer to bridging the gap? Why doesn't anybody know what we need to do? Why doesn't school staff development focus on this issue? I have thought that if educators knew what to do; surely we would do it. Delpit, in her article, Other Peoples children, seems to be saying that African-American children need both direct instruction and process oriented instruction. It seems that white educators focus on process oriented instruction, leaving the African Americans to flounder in failure.

Another thing: We spend hours in staff development on diversity training. Not one staff development has mentioned the things Delpit mentions in her article. Why not? She brings to light important differences in the cultures between African-American and white people. For example, the way we express authority is different. I had no idea that African-Americans expect teachers to earn respect by personal effort and personal characteristics. This is nice to know, since I teach African-Americans from the inner city. Why doesn't someone make this code more explicit?

In Winston-Salem, city and school system, studies have recently shown that African-Americans receive more discipline referrals and are charged with more crimes. Is this because we are not educating them in our schools? Is this because of socioeconomic factors?

Also, I was not aware of any codes. This article really helped me to see things differently. I am interested in reading more from Delpit.

Author:  Mitzi Story [ Mon Nov 27, 2006 9:10 am ]
Post subject: 

I am also interested in reading more from Delpit. This article discussed many issues dealing with African American students in our schools. If we come to understand their culture maybe we will be better able to raise test scores for this population.

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