In part it’s because of an educational culture focused on punishing rambunctious young boys who chew breakfast pastries into the shape of a gun … and incorporating theories such as “white privilege” into school curriculum.
We’ve addressed the “white privilege” industry before, including at the university level, but what’s going on in Wisconsin is a textbook case study in how far off our educational priorities have become.
On the surface “CREATE Wisconsin” seems noble enough in its intent.
The program, established in 2009 by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, was supposedly developed to help school teachers and administrators better understand the challenges facing minority students – particularly black kids – in the state’s K-12 schools.
It argues that minority students sometimes struggle because public education is geared toward white students, and lessons are often delivered in a manner that minority students can’t understand.
It argues that too many minority students are placed in special education because school officials fail to understand their strengths, challenges and cultural norms.
In short, the achievement gap that exists between white and minority students has less to do with ability than culture, and the lack of a level playing field in schools.
But there are questions about CREATE Wisconsin that deserve answers – particularly its emphasis on “white privilege” and its determination to create a distinct set of expectations for minority students.
But remember, we can’t cut the growth of the education budget or we will harm the children.