SCUSD Observer

Sacramento, California

A Letter from the chair of the Black Parallel School Board

The African American youth in Sacramento are at a state of heightened emergency in relation to their academic pursuit yet, we are not truly outraged about this. With education being one of the fundamental keys to success we must make every effort to ensure the academic key fits correctly once it’s placed into the hands of our African American youth.

On Saturday, September 5, 2009, the Black Parallel School Board held its monthly meeting at the Oak Park United Methodist Church in Sacramento. The meeting started promptly at 10 am and adjourned at 12 pm. One of the key items we covered was standardized testing. Readers are you aware that within the Sacramento City Unified School District during the past school year of all the African American students they are serving only 8 children of African descent are in geometry and there are only 9 African Descent youth in Algebra II. African American students overall have made little to none standardized test improvements and the same is occurring with the high school exit exam test results. Our children’s ability to articulate themselves in written form is declining astronomically too.

Children of African descent are not doing well when it comes to mathematics and language arts this is a fact. Together as a community, we have a job to do. This job goes beyond the band-aid approach. When the Black Parallel School Board meets monthly we are not there in large numbers along with our children, nieces, nephews, siblings, aunts, uncles, parents and the like, yet we wonder why our children are doing poorly.

We will come together in large numbers to support concerts, ball games, and other extra curricular activities; however, we neglect to use the same energy and efforts to bring about constant change when it comes to our children’s academic minds in fear of rattling the chains.

We must call ourselves to a higher place of accountability by ridding ourselves of the lackadaisical attitude and by not selfishly assuming that this doesn’t impact you. Our ancestors did not bleed, die, and be dehumanized for generations for us to stop fighting.

The battle doesn’t end until we are called home. This battle is not just an African American battle, it is a battle that every race is responsible for fighting for their culture individually and for other cultures too. When one is not adequately educated they will lack the tenacity needed to be positive community contributors causing the cycle of poverty to continue to perpetuate from generation-to-generation. This in and of itself is one of the key ingredients that continues to feed racism.

STAR test results are our business even if it means holding all-night tutoring sessions — so well be it. Being on a unified forefront is so essential. When we come to the table to discuss education, we should be on one accord regardless of our level of achievements and the accolades associated with our name(s). Our skin color is also not an item that we should constantly focus our attention, but that isn’t to say it isn’t a vital area. Our primary focal point should always be those children who are not performing at their “True Potential” even if they aren’t in our neighborhoods. We are truly living in a world where we are constantly producing lost generations who are wandering around hopelessly looking and waiting for us to take charge of them — we appear to be asleep.

Most people are quick to play the, “race card” not too many of those same individuals are willing to come into a room and set aside differences to bring about true change. Politicians want you to hear them so they can be elected yet, when elections occur, you don’t see them until it’s election time again. The fact that there is no funding truly doesn’t matter, what matters is that we all want the best for Sacramento children; that in and of itself is enough for us to work until we can see the change verses just thinking change is going to plop out of the sky into our laps — we have to go and get it.

Those who caused things to truly happen took care of business and they did it with so much passion where they didn’t even care if that meant that they lost their lives in the mist of the fight. Our children are doing poorly in Sacramento in terms of education; I asked when will The Next Generation’s Academic Failures Be Truly Televised. Years ago, survival occurred academically, physically, and financially because there was a unified effort for everyone to, “Be There Brothers/Sisters Keeper At All Cost.”

I am writing as a concerned citizen who is on the battlefield for our youth regardless of their ethnicity, social economic status, religion, and/or sexual orientation.

Lailah Ameerah Muwwakkil

“And now we are reaching out for the daybreak of freedom and justice and equality.”
Martin Luther King Jr.

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Written by scusdobserver

September 11, 2009 at 9:14 pm

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