Monday, September 03, 2007

Must not Mention that Blacks do Poorly at School

The following grovelling apology appeared on -- a TN/VA news site:

"Sometimes, under the crush of deadline, we publish a story that could have been worded better. If the topic is particularly complex, like the federal No Child Left Behind education-accountability law, our task becomes even more difficult.

We simply blew it on one such story Aug. 24, and three readers called us on it.

We reported that seven Southwest Virginia schools failed to make "adequate yearly progress" under the No Child Left Behind Act. The following sentence is what drew the readers' ire, and rightly so: "Virginia Middle School didn't make AYP (adequate yearly progress) because its black students underperformed in their English classes. In addition, the middle school's students with disabilities underperformed in math."


Everybody knows about widespread black educational failure but nobody is supposed to mention it. Are we really sure that that helps anyone? It sound like the view of sex in Victorian England -- an era with an immense prostitution industry. Covering things up can just lead to worse abuses.

That the original story was written by a black writer is the amusing part, however. It was presumably the blackness of the writer that got it into print in the first place.