Get sick, get well
Hang around a ink well
Ring bell, hard to tell
If anything is goin' to sell
-- Bob Dylan

Thursday, April 18, 2013

School Reform Mississippi-style

 Arkansas 1958 (Atlantic Monthly)

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant has signed a charter school expansion bill into law continues the state's long tradition of two-tier schooling and racial segregation.

The new law is one that expands the authority to create charter schools -- public schools run by private groups that are freed up from government regulation. Charters in states like Mississippi and Alabama are the latest version of the "segregation academies" which allowed whites an escape from school deseg agreements after the Brown decision. For more than four decades after they were established, "segregation academies" in Mississippi towns like Indianola continue to define nearly every aspect of community life.

The Clarion-Ledger reports that at least 50 Mississippi school districts have student populations that are more than 75 percent black, according to an analysis of state Department of Education data. The majority of those districts’ student populations are more than 90 percent black. Justice Dept. investigations recently found the state operating schools that retain their "racial identity from the Jim Crow era,” 

Other measures signed by Bryant  include a pilot plan in four districts to partially pay teachers based on teaching evaluations and student test scores.

Also see:
Segregated Charter Schools Evoke Separate But Equal Era in U.S. (Bloomberg News)
Charter Schools and the New Segregation (Diane Ravitch Blog)
In North Carolina, school resegregation by charter? (Inst. for Southern Studies)

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