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Monday
Jun062011

NY York Parents SHOCKED to Discover the NAACP Braintrust Doesn't Care About ALL Black People

Oh. Look, in Harlem a group of Black parents is upset with the NAACP for filing a lawsuit that might close charter schools in their community that mainly service children of color.  To all of the parents SHOCKED that the NAACP might take action that is not in your best interest, WELCOME TO OUR WORLD!  

Protesters Rally at NAACP Over School Lawsuit: MyFoxNY.com

 

Read the bottom of this post for an important public service announcement to Kathleen Kernivan. Mainstream media is downright gleeful at the prospect of Black people rallying publicly against the NAACP, this is nothing new around here. 

SO here is some background:

IT’S CLEAR WHY the teachers union in New York has gone to court to stop the city’s planned shutdown of failing schools and to block charter schools from using the public space. Jobs are in play, and the main mission of the union is, after all, to protect its members. What’s not clear is why the NAACP would join an effort to keep open schools that have failed miserably. Considering that it is mostly minority students who are affected, the NAACP’s action is almost incomprehensible. (NOT TO THE READERS OF THIS BLOG) WAPO

More "shock" from mainstream media. 

The images are jarring. Photos of children with signs saying “NAACP, drop the lawsuit” and “NAACP, unite us, don’t divide us.” Video clips of parents, teachers and community leaders urging the NAACP to put the education of children first and to stop supporting the status quo.It was so jarring because these children, parents and community leaders were black. Thousands of black Harlem residents rallied in the street May 26 protesting the NAACP. WAPO

Yeah it totally sucks when an organization you were raised to revere ends up doing things you find to be a direct threat to the health, safety and welfare of you and your children.

NEWSFLASH:The NAACP takes positions  that, as a practical matter, are  downright DESTRUCTIVE to Black people .ALL. THE . TIME.  Y'all just aren't paying attention... well its a good thing you're reading this blog since I DO pay attention to these things. 

For example, there was a case out of Louisiana where a man raped his 8 year old step daughter causing damage so severed that her internal organs were ripped to shreds... NAACP filed an amicus brief in support of the child rapist. 

There was a HORRIFIC gang rape of a Black woman and child down in West Palm Beach Florida, and the local NAACP held a rally..... on behalf of the gang rapists.  They wanted four violent predators released from prison so they could rape, torture, and kill more Black women and children. When they got called out, they LIED and the local West Palm Beach Chapter president failed to disclose that her family had a direct connection to one of the gang rapists.

So don't ever substitute your judgement for that of the NAACP braintrust... what's best for you and whats bests for the NAACP have nothing to do with each other.  

Parents To Rally Against NAACP Harlem: MyFoxNY.com

 

As I understand it, and readers I invite you to correct me if I'm wrong, charter schools ARE public schools. So the battle isn't over public school education, but WHO CONTROLS that public school education and the facilities where the children attending the schools are located. And I am also assuming that ALL of the kids in both charter schools and non charter schools in Harlem are children of color so what "protected class" is involved? Everybody is Black or Brown!

 According to an editorial written by Jealous (he doesn't actually write his own work-but anywhoo), he states:

We believe that if we make all our schools great places to learn, we will have more than better institutions and better-prepared students — we will have a better country. Benjamin Jealous' Assistant 

Um so parents in NYC, what efforts, other than filing a lawsuit, is the NAACP making to improve the schools in NYC? But finally to why I wrote this post -- this heartbreaking quote from Kathleen Kernivan:

 

My child cannot be told that she’s not going to get to go to her school in September,” said charter school parent Kathleen Kernivan. “I cannot look her in the eye, as a parent, and tell her, ‘Well, the problem is that this group of people that Mommy told you about during Black History Month, that did all those great things a long time ago – they want to stop you from doing great things.” WAPO

Oh I FEEL your pain Kathleen. I FEEL your pain. But as a parent, its important that you tell your daughter THE TRUTH and the truth is that Black people are  NOT a monolith and that there are Black people out there who have agendas that are NOT in your daughter's best interest.  When she encounters these Black people, she should oppose them... and NOT be shy about it. 

I Can still remember one of the most patronizing telephone conversations I have ever had in my life was with the national spokesperson of the NAACP named Richard McIntyre who was their communications directors.If you want to head the condescension drip from Richard Mcintyre's lips, you can listen to our one public interaction on our old podcast. Anywhoo, Mr. McIntyre was one who said "Black on Black crime is not part of our mission." 

I know its shocking to your system because you think the NAACP is the same organization we grew up revering. Its not. That organization is gone and it ain't coming back so if you are looking for something to tell your daughter, tell her this "You must judge an advocacy organization based on the content of the character of its current leadership. " In other words, 

Stop evaluating modern "Black" organizations based on the courageous acts of men and women 40 years ago! They're gone!

You deal with the organization as it exists today. Where there is common ground, work with them. Where there isn't, FIGHT em' and don't feel one moment of conflict about it, your child's future depends on it. 

MORE POSTS ABOUT WAOD vs the NAACP 

 Comedian Who Calls Black Women "the Ugliest Women He's Ever Seen In His Life" To Host NAACP "Image Awards"

NAACP Contacts WADO- National Office Won't Be Speaking Out On Dunbar Village- Addressing Hate Crimes Against Black Women Not 'Mission'

 Chicago Tribune Covers NAACP & AL Sharpton Joint Dunbar Village Press Conference and the Email Accountability Campaign-UPDATE: Larger NAACP Role???

Al Sharpton Wants Rapists and Torturers Roaming Your Neighborhood---NAACP and Sharpton Get Into It at Press Conference

Look at What Y'all Did: NAACP Does 180 on West Palm Beach Prosecutors... Two More Suspects MAY be Arrested-Update on the Victims

 

 

Reader Comments (48)

I have watched the NAACP's actions with trepidation. Who is their publicist? How is it that they keep making these egregious mistakes?

Qalil.com

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterQalil Little

Well, in all fairness, most black children aren't doing well in public, private, or charter schools. If NY charter schools are anything like DC, THEN THEY ARE MIRED IN CORRUPTION and seldom hire certified teachers or credentialed instructors. They are also top heavy in Administrative costs and have very poor financial fiscal oversight.

Close the schools. Save some money. If those angry parents are actually property tax paying citizens I might have a bit more empathy for them. But if they are non property tax paying apartment dwellers, then they really have no say in how NYC appropriates its budget for public education.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBLKSeaGoat

@Qalil Little

You're assuming this is a mistake.

When I was a teen, I thought the NAACP at the time was a joke organization more interested in photo ops than actually advancing Black people. So, I wasn't interested in joining or funding the organization.

As an adult, my attitude toward the NAACP has turned to loathing since they are clearly more interested in personal power above all else. So, its not shocking the NAACP's leaders want quality education for THEIR kids, but are hostile of the "unwashed" Black masses getting the same shot.

Martin Luther King is spinning in his grave so fast over the NAACP's betrayal that he's drilled all the way to China.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Respectfully to some of you who may be supporters of charter schools, I am one of many thousands of people in my city who is admantly opposed to charter schools; the problem here with the NAACP is their timing and strategies and tactics used.

Where was the NAACP and other community education activists when the charter schools first started? You don't wait for them to get up and running to protest against them, you nip them in the bud when they first start making their applications, securing funding for public money AND right wing, pro-corporate money, etc. AND YOU DON'T ACCEPT MONEY FROM THE SAME FOUNDATIONS AND COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE DEVELOPERS THAT ALSO GIVE MONEY AND SUPPLIES TO CHARTER SCHOOLS! :(

Charter schools, school vouchers, etc., seek to damage public school education, something we have long fought for. Charters and vouchers also serve as a tool to further undermine and further weaken teachers' unions and all other government employee unions (and other unions in other fields of work), the notion of public money for public schools, parents and other public input in public school policy, how public school property is used, etc. The NAACP waited too long to fight the good fight, but now in a very bad, irresponsible manner. All they've done now is make a lot of people mad at them. Makes you wonder what criteria do they use to decide which battles to engage in. But in all fairness, some chapters are better organized, better prepared, better disciplined them others. :)

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

oops, I apologize, I forgot to also ask, where was the NAACP this past Friday when more than 1,000 people protested Mayor Bloomberg plan to close 20 fire stations across the city?

In a city the size of NY, don't they realize what a huge public safety crisis that would bring about? And need we ask where those proposed fire stations are located? :( :(

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

As a person who went to NYC public schools that had a charter schools take one of of the 3 floors of our school building I am with the NAACP on this. The schools are overcrowded as it is, and to try to cram the students into a even smaller space is not right either. Every child does not get a spot in a charter school., nor are public schools allowed to pick their students and kick them out if they aren't performing up to standards. To give 1500 students 2 floors while 200 or less take up an entire floor is not right. Some of these charter schools don't even publicize when they are taking applications, just another way to weed out the general population of students.

There are plenty of vacant lots to build new charter schools on, why don't they get their corporate sponsors to help with that.

I know the NAACP is probably taking a more political stance to side with the teachers union on this but this is also on behalf of the vast majority of kids who are still in public school, and who by the way are kids of color too. This battle was actually started by the parents of kids who currently go to the public school building who are apparently already are dealing with a over crowding issue.

And by the way according to test scores charter schools only do slightly better. They have a few outstanding ones, just like there are a few outstanding public school. They aren't getting the best teachers b/c they pay is lower. People who teach urban kids are fighting an uphill battle, the curriculum needs to be revamped, and parents need to do better too. Putting on a uniform and teaching to a test in which the kids aren't even doing a lot better is not the solution either.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterblkchik

Revemamafrica….

Sorry but I have to disagree with you on this one. And Ben Jealous who *cough* doesn’t have kids in the systems needs to step back. One wonders if he is still heading the NAACP in B-more where
So as a parent let me say you really don’t know the tremendous pressure that comes with education until your mired steep in it. My son is in charter school and is moving to another charter school for middle school next year. The biggest anxiety that many of parents in the District of Columbia worry about is middle school. We have maybe 6 choices. Yup six!

The even funnier part of charters (speaking in D.C. terms), is that parochial schools are turning charter due to the decline in enrollment, which from my understanding is happening across the country. So the choices that we are left with are: Your neighborhood public school, charter, and private (tuition starting off at 27k).

What I like about charters is that it gives parents a choice and you can choose a school that can fit with your educational values. Charters/vouchers allow those parents who may not have the economic wherewithal to move to an area a chance to still give there child a better school.

To be fair, not all charters are good and there are some that need to be closed down. There are fit falls with the charter school model. But, there are some great models like the SEED school, where it's a boarding school. I think that this is a great model, espically for kids who don't have a support system and need to be taken out of their current enivornment to have a chance to be a productive citizen.

Bottom line is in parenting there is no do overs. We can't wait for the system to change. I can't wait for more involved parents to join my neighborhood school to ensure that we are all supporting the school and each other in raising successful kids. So if I got options then I'm going to take advantage of them.


@blckseagoat….if the parents are renting doesn’t part of that rent contribute to paying the property taxes.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterthelildiva4u

I'm not in education so I don't know much about the issues between public schools vs. charter schools and won't comment on them; I won't be a know-it-all and comment about something that I don't know much about. (I will, however, pass this post along to my friends who are teachers and maybe tell them to comment here.) However, the NAACP has given me a bad taste in my mouth since college..... and that was a long time ago. Good to see yet another reason why my intuition was correct.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterSpinster

thelildiva4u wrote:

The even funnier part of charters (speaking in D.C. terms), is that parochial schools are turning charter due to the decline in enrollment, which from my understanding is happening across the country. So the choices that we are left with are: Your neighborhood public school, charter, and private (tuition starting off at 27k).

What I like about charters is that it gives parents a choice and you can choose a school that can fit with your educational values. Charters/vouchers allow those parents who may not have the economic wherewithal to move to an area a chance to still give there child a better school.

Ding, ding, ding! Give the woman her prize.

You are correct that many parents are on the school choice bandwagon because of (a) greater choice in educational opportunities and (b) more control on what their kids learn. Put blunty charter schools, private schools, home schooling, etc. create competition which forces public schools to step up their game to avoid losing students and funding via our tax dollars.

Hence, the NAACP opposing charter schools or any form of school choice makes them supporters of a monopoly (public schools only). And we all know monopolies are bad for customers in this case students and their parents.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Im going to say this and come back later for more detailed commentary. Maybe.

Siding with the union? The same union that puts teachers who actually attempt to teach in rubber rooms? The same union that makes a school population that is nowhere near Jewish take off so many days for Jewish holidays. Why because the damn teachers are Jews? Also the same union that protects awful teachers, so called guidance counselors and administrators? I dont think we should be so quick to ride hard for the NYC Teachers Union.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMena

Point of information:
Those "thousands" of parents and children who "protested" the NAACP participation in the lawsuit against school closings were there because Eva Moskowitz, head of a charter school chain, LOCKED ENTRANCE TO THE SCHOOL PREVENTING STUDENT ENTRY, essentially forcing parents to participate in the protest until Moskowitz allowed students to enter the school that day.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMary Alice

I think charter schools could be improved if there are more male school teachers--and are sex segregated--not racially segregated--many males are NOT MEN for this reason(women are born, but men are made; not macho or wimpy, but balanced)[just an opinion]--I wouldnt want my daughter being chased by a golddigging male--we women are actually doing better that the male counterparts--i even see this in white societies---asians less likely though, but even they have their problems

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterjubilee

Respectfully, we must be very careful that we don't take elitist, classist attitudes towards apartment dwellers; people often live where they can afford. So the issue is not where parents and guardians live, the issue is do we have all the correct info on how charters and vouchers harm our civil/human right to quality public school education? Often we do not and we must arm ourselves with the correct info; this drive towards charters and vouchers, driven by private foundations, i.e., Washington, DC and the Walton Foundation (the Walton family of Wal-mart fame), right wing Republicans, commercial real estate developers and just politically right wing people and organizations in general should cause us to pause and then do our homework. This is especially interesting because these charters and vouchers movement is being led in a way to attack teachers' unions and other unions and it's another pet public policy of Pres. Obomba and Sec. of Education Arne Duncan, who himself has never been a school teacher and does not have a degree in education. Right now across the country, several lawsuits are pending in Chicago, California and other places, it's all to privitize public school education. And let us not ignore the fact the attack on teachers' unions is patently sexist since we know the teaching profession is one that is still mostly women; in WDC it's mostly Black women. When Michelle The Fascist Rhee took her hatchet out, hundreds of Black women teachers were fired without due process and then they brought in a slew of much younger, less experienced White teachers. Well, I guess you know how well that went over! :)

The NAACP and the teacher's union went about this so wrong; they should fire whoever devised their strategy and crisis communications work, but at the same time this fight of charters and vouchers is intensifying in NYC. I think it was Democracy Now! that did a report a few years ago on the many corporations trying to fuel millions into charters and vouchers and the list of such corporations is like a list of who's who of what I call economic KKK types. PUBLIC MONEY FOR PUBLIC SCHOOLS! PERIOD! :) :)

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

This is what I get for rushing to post a comment before a meeting. This should have read

Sorry but I have to disagree with you on this one. And Ben Jealous who *cough* doesn’t have kids in the system then he needs to step back. One wonders if he is still heading the NAACP in B-more when his children are school age, what school will he send them to?

Sorry for the typos

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterthelildiva4u

@ lildiva,

Parents paying rent means absolutely nothing. I have to pay property taxes on the apartment building I own regardless of its occupancy rate.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBLKSeaGoat

Dang Blkseagoat I hate to say it,especially as someone who grew up with five siblings in a working class family who's family lived in the projects,but you have a point@your first comment

I don't think that poor people who don't invest in their children's education should automatically expect their children to get a quality education because ain't nothing for free.One of the things about being low income and staying there,whether by choice or not, is you seem to forfeit your right to make certain decisions for yourself.People make your decisions for you. In a perfect America all children would have access to a quality education and good teachers but there is a price to be paid for all of that.Couple that with the fact that some inner city and poorer kids tend to be a bit hard to teach given their not being reared right and you just gotta take what folks give you.

I feel bad for the children but for those of us who grew up in the projects who truly value education at some point we become adults and whatever our parents didn't or couldn't give us we can pick up the slack and gain access to better education for ourselves.You start off a little late and further behind others who's parents invested in their educations early on,you may even be older than them entering into college or even getting a high school diploma, but with hard work you can catch up and go on to do great things

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@RevmamaAfrica I could've sworn that Al Sharpton was for Charter schools and so was Jessie from years ago.Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong but I believe that they were heavily in support of Bush's cahrter school and voucher programs?

I though I saw them on a video stating there support for the charter and voucher program somewhere.

http://mostlywater.org/charter_school_hype_and_how_its_managed
The above I think is a great article detailing Sharptons involvement with the privatization of schools

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qglQ2CxKhWs
Steve Perry speaks in support of school vouchers and says the NAACP is a relic

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fiFPlbdzgE8
Sharpton seems like nothing more than a hypocrit in this video here.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@Truth P

Are you saying that school vouchers are bad because Al Sharpton agrees with them?

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Um...charter schools are horrible. They DO NOT educate children at a better level than public schools. Often they are worse. They are however cash cows for those who run them. They are simply a method used to undermine public education and take needed funds out of the public school system.

Regardless of the NAACP's motives they are right on this one.

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJJ

@JJ

Where's your proof that charter schools are worse than public schools?

June 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

@Fred

Do you read? Study after study has shown that charter schools are no better and are often worse than public schools. That's a fact. Also it's a fact that the voucher/charter school is backed by those who as Revmamafrika pointed out are the economic equivalent of the KKK.

The voucher/charter school movement is funded by these folk to rid the country of public education - a goal they've had forever and their earlier attempts failed - do your research. I've done mine.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJJ

@ Truth P, the first reason you just gave is why so many people in NYC and elsewhere are ready to stick a fork in him 'cause they are done with him! He's now shown all of his behind and true political colors! Yes, he's been doing the "tour" in support of "quality education" with that fascist Newt Ginrich (sp?) "Contract With (or On) America"and Sec. of Education with no education degree, Arne Duncan.

When corporations, i.e., the Walton Family Foundations (yes, plural), the Gates Foundation and others pour millions of $$$ in these schools, it's not to improve public education, they want to set school policy, destroy collective bargaining rights for teachers and other public school employee unions (Wisconsin?). When public money goes to charter schools, the money follows the student; when the student does not attend that charter school, it keeps going to that school from the public money. So, then how much money is left for public education?

@ Fred, I'm saying school vouchers and Rev. Al are both bad politics; I mean did you hear the radio ads Rev. Al has been doing for a "male enhancement product"? Is he friggin' serious? Even is parents/guardians receive voucher money for their child(children) to attend the "school of their choice" and it's a private school, the voucher usually only covers a third of the yearly cost. So where does the other 2/3 come from? Food stamps? Your unemployment check? We must watch the game that is being played, it's a slow, drawn out game cause they know some of us will not pay attention to this horrific process for 5 to 15 years. At that point, there's not much left to public education. My point here about the NAACP is that they went about this in the wrong way, they don't look good from a public relations standpoint. Whew! :( :(

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

@Fred they gotta be.

I'm that close minded these days (no sarcasm here)

plus did you read any of my links about Sharpton's underhandedness?

http://mostlywater.org/charter_school_hype_and_how_its_managed

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@revmama I've always been extremely suspicious when it comes to The Gates family.They seem so interested in black people around the globe.Something is going on with those folks,I just know it.

I'm telling y'all something ain't clean in the milk!

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@JJ

Where are the links to the studies you refer to?

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

@revmamaafrika

Since you brought up ED drugs, did you hear about Wisconsin teachers unions suing so that their members could get more funding for viagra:

http://maciverinstitute.com/2011/06/claims-of-discrimination-by-mps-pop-up-again-in-ed-drug-case/

Shouldn't teacher unions be ensuring taxpayer money goes toward educating kids instead trying to get lucky?

Just a thought.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Here are three articles citing how charter schools are generally performing no better than traditional public schools and often times worse:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/02/education/02charters.html

http://articles.sun-sentinel.com/2010-07-05/news/fl-cpcol-charter-schools-page-0705-20100705_1_school-success-story-private-charters-graduates

http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/la-oew-shaffer12feb12,0,938309.story

I think that people place to much responsibility on the schools for the failures of their kids. Many of our kids are very difficult to educate due to poor behavior, little home and community support, a subculture of anti-intellectualism and no motivation. When you move these kids to charter schools, all that you are doing is moving the problems from one location to another. The most successful schools are those that filter out low performing students.

I don't think that the NAACP should be preventing parents from sending their kids to the schools of their choice, but studies are not revealing any big success with those schools. Private schools do well because those students come from better overall environments and/or from homes where the parents are motivated enough to invest financially in their kids' education.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterGoode

@revmamaafrika Trust me I get it. If anyone understands the takeover of education it’s me. One person that you left out is Warren Buffet. His daughter is teaming up with other for profit funders to build a “Harlem Zone” model in Ward 7 (D.C. Kenilworth-Parkside neighborhood). I Rhee-jected the former Chancellor of the District of Columbia, due to her ineptness and can’t stand the PR inspired NBC education nation.

Again, I get it! But I in the end I have a child to raise and I have to do the best I can to provide them with a good education among other things. And if I have an option to do this by sending him to a school that I believe works for us then why not?

While my neighborhood is transitioning it hasn’t parleyed into the neighborhood school. Why should I have to send my child to a school where parents and teachers don’t have the same educational value system? Why should he be held back and used as a martyr for public education? The system has failed and if I have options that can provide him with a better educational opportunity then I’m going to take advantage. Like I said before there are no do over’s when it comes to children. And what ya’ll folks are going to do is hold me accountable for raising a productive citizen of this world, so if the tools that are available aren’t working then what do we do?

I relate this to Gina’s mantra to black women living in unsafe neighborhoods where men pray on them like
animals. If they have the OPTION to leave and move to a better place where they will be both physically and mentally safe then why not leave?

Let’s not forgot that not too long ago we were cramming into one room classrooms with no air condition dying to be educated. What’s the difference between then and now…..the parents.

We as a whole (poor-middle class) are responsible for the state of education. Yup the middle class folks are offenders too! How you ask? How does anyone explain the continual achievement gap that exists between African American Students and white students who live in affluent Suburbs (i.e Shaker Heights and Prince George's County)? These are kids who don’t have to worry about the bottom two portion of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs.

And that’s what the NAACP needs to be focusing their efforts on, not participating in further disenfranchising parents who may not have the finanical ablitliy to move to a better neighborhood from exercising their option to send their children to school that they feel is best.

Lastly, I caution those commenter’s who are blaming poor people for being poor. This seems to be the new in vogue thing to do in our country. Last I heard all American citizens have the same rights and nothing has changed within the constitution that gives one economic class more than the less ones.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterthelildiva4u

@Fred
Last time I checked you were quite capable of researching and reading on your own. I don't play the Internet proof game. If I can do it so can you. Google is your friend.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJJ

OK, I'm just going to jump in here as a homeschooling parent AND property tax payer. I also grew up in NYC (Harlem, specifically) and attended public schools PK-12. This whole thing saddens me.

When we were looking at schools here in Houston for our girls we visited a number of charter schools. I can't tell you how many of them flat out lied about curriculum, activities, education level of their teachers, etc. I went to tour one and actually witnessed the Kinder teacher texting on her phone while the kids were playing with glue and scissors. The school had been through three principals in six years, the facilities were horrible and there were no criminal background checks conducted on the custodial staff. The others we saw talked a good game but when we asked more probing questions you could tell that they were either lying or witholding information.

It seems as if many parents hear the word "charter", see the uniforms, extended hours and the charismatic admin and they automatically think their kid is getting a great education. That is the problem - charters rely on parents being completely and totally frustrated with their local schools. Also, many charters started popping up in areas where the Latino population had increased and white parents did not want their kids going to school with "those people" but they couldn't afford to send their kid to a private. As far as black parents go, many of them have no other options so a charter pops up and they will do just about anything to get their kid in. The fact that charters CAN be selective (lottery my @ss ) and CAN force parental involvement and CAN bypass many of the rules public schools must follow creates a false sense of security for parents. Many of these charters are inflating attendance records and grades to get more government money and misappropriating funds. Some have ties to radical religious and social groups yet still receive taxpayer dollars. There is an article on a network of charters here in Texas that is funded by a Turkish Muslim organization: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/07/education/07charter.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1
There is little to no oversight of charters and the fraud and corruption has been slowly making its way to the news. Of course, the vehement anti-teachers' union sentiment has helped keep scrutiny away from charters since everyone knows American kids are dumb because of tenure. SMH.

Yes, public schools are failing black children but that is primarily due to black adults failing black children. Charters are filled with the same kids, same parents and same problems as public schools. In this case I agree with the NAACP's decision to file suit. Charters are exclusionary and they are not a quick fix for the problems in the public school system. Do you all realize how few kids are selected compared to how many apply? Have you seen the disappointment of hundreds of kids every spring because they didn't get picked and now they KNOW they will have to return to a crappy school because everyone around them keeps telling them how crappy it is and how they just hope to God they can get in that charter? Or how in some cases children must get up at the crack of dawn to travel across town to get to a "good" charter school. They are spending 3 hours a day TRAVELING to school and then spending another 8-10 hours in school. For young kids in the primary grades this is not healthy.

As far as econmics go - since when did money NOT dictate your quality of life? Poor and middle class parents aren't going to have as many choices as upper middle class/rich parents and the quality of what they can choose is not going to be as good. This goes for housing, cars, food, etc. I know we all think of education as a great equalizer but it is a business just like anything else. More affluent neighborhoods with homeowners have better schools that are well-funded and supported. Poor/lower class neighborhoods with majority renters, single parents and low wage earners are going to have schools that are not as good. It's not fair but that's how it goes. No one is being denied a right to an education but it is the quality that is the issue here. Are charters doing a BETTER job at educating this specific population (black & brown & poor/middle class) or are they just cherry-picking students and hiring good PR people? I think the NAACP is right to at least ask the question and they are advocating for the majority of black people - most black people do not have their kids in charters. So I fail to see how they are being elitist here. I agree with you, Gina, that the organization has a history of putting the well-being of black women under its heel but in this case, I think they are right. Far more black women and children are stuck in failing schools than those being "helped" by the charter system.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterReese

@thelildiva4u

Ironically, your comments echo those of Michelle Rhee, who used to be anti-voucher until she had the following epiphany:

“I was not willing to say to these parents and say to these mothers, ‘You know what? Just give me five years, right? Just take one for the team. Your kid may not learn how to read and write and do math for those five years, but this is what is good for the system.

I would never accept that for my child so I was never going to put any other mother in that situation.”

Hear the rest of her comments in the following video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iwSY_b53gwg&feature=player_embedded

Rhee is correct. Why should a kid's race, place of birth, income level, etc. determine whether their educational opportunities are very wide or very narrow? Is that an example of TRUE discrimination?

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

There seems to be more than a few people in this thread who are more than happy to place most of the blame for the failure of the school system on Black folks. But yanno, at the end of the day it's not relevant if Black parents work hard or don't work hard to raise their kids right -- not when the system is still out to keep you down, using every trick in the book, and all for the benefit of those occupying the top tier. So it's the system which needs everyone's combined collective energy and in the meantime, maybe let individuals make up their own minds how hard they want to work as parents, etc. I'm sure it's kinda obvious to most people that what they get out of life is a direct result of what they put into it, but when we have greedy dominating twits at the top syphoning off what rightfully belongs to you -- access to a quality education for your child, regardless how much money you earn -- that is a massive problem which cannot be solved by blaming the parents.

Btw, I love coming here and having the first thing which loads onto my browser be this: Unapologetic, Uncompromising, and Unbowed in Defense of Black Women and Girls. LOVE IT!!

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterm Andrea

I have a cousin who graduated from a Charter school,with perfect attendance and honors, and could not get into community college.Not only that but they made her go get a G.E.D before she could attend
This happened to a few people I know.

Not to mention that I myself briefly,i think like 1or 2 months, attended a charter school and it was the worse experience of my life.

They allowed teen mothers to bring their children,which included small babies, to school and have them IN the classroom.All those girls talked about were the babies.We went for like four hours a day only because we didn't have a lunch or recess.So we were supposed to be learning the whole time.

It was at this school that the principal and teachers decided to do a documentary of sorts on us students.They turned the cameras on all the students and basically encouraged all the kids to tell about their struggles ONLY.All the kids had very negative things to say.Their parents were on drugs,they had a baby and the dad don't help,they had been abused.Some of them started crying.ALL THIS WAS BEING FILMED.It came around to my turn and I had nothing bad to say.I started telling the camera man that my parents were married,my dad worked at a factory,my mom was a SAHM,I didn't have kids,none of my siblings or parents were in jail,that I had not experienced any abuse or been raped and had both my mom and dad's family as a support system.I kept it brief.At which point the camera man basically dismissed me and my story.I believe he didn't film me at all.He went on to the next one.

I found out that they were doing this to show to city hall, I guess and convince them that Charter Schools were a good investment.The only reason I actually went to the school is because my parents heard about them receiving all this funding and bringing a new way to teach students in.My parents thought I would be getting better.They were wrong.The school eventually had several scandals involving money being stolen from the school and going into the pockets of a principal/director.

I recall a few of the black women teachers leaving the school very disappointed and advising people to take their kids out of the school.They were disappointed because the children were not learning anything and MOST of the teachers apparently were not real teachers.These few women seemed to really care about black children and spoke up and said they could not continue with that school because it was a fraud.The school had no structure and allowed kids to come and go as they pleased.They gave credits to students just for showing up,so I heard.I remember teachers still at the school after those women left trying to accuse those women of being bitter and being used as a tool by public schools to destroy the reputation of the school.Shortly after those teachers stopped getting paid and they too began to publicly denounce the school and it's practices.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@revmama:

"Even is parents/guardians receive voucher money for their child(children) to attend the "school of their choice" and it's a private school, the voucher usually only covers a third of the yearly cost. So where does the other 2/3 come from? Food stamps? Your unemployment check? We must watch the game that is being played, it's a slow, drawn out game cause they know some of us will not pay attention to this horrific process for 5 to 15 years. At that point, there's not much left to public education. "

This is why I'm suspicious of the largely Republikkkan support of school vouchers. Trust, if enough of "other" children start flooding private schools with the aid of vouchers, all the private schools need to do is raise the tuition. They can still keep out who they want to keep out, then those "other" children will go where? Their neighborhood schools will most likely have been shut down or be severely overcrowded. It's a sad situation that needs to be fixed. I freely admit that I have no clue how to do it, however I do believe that it CAN be remedied; but there are a select few who will not let that happen because it will be of no benefit to them.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterMommieDearest

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2011-03-29/michelle-rhees-cheating-scandal-school-test-score-irregularities/ @Fred Are you speaking of this Michelle ?

She is in cahoots with republicans.We cannot trust them nor the democrats.It's all politricks.Here alliance with republicans only further shows DeMS=RePUBS

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P.

@Truth P

Long before anyone ever heard of Michelle Rhee, I first heard of charter schools because a friend of mine had her son enrolled in one. Growing up in DC, the only alternatives to public schools I heard of was Catholic schools so I did not know what to make of a charter schools.

Then, I met my friend's preteen son and was struck how he was FAR cry from the ill-mannered, willfully ignorant thug wannabes that are too often associated with his generation. My friend explained to me that her son really thrived when he moved from a public school to a charter school.

My friend's experiences explains why charter schools and other alternatives to public schools is gaining for supporters. Personal testimonies from friends and family are a lot more effective and moving that statistics alone.

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Everyone,

One more thing. Here are more testimonies about parents whose kids have become better students because of charter schools.

http://link.brightcove.com/services/player/bcpid22526598001?bckey=AQ~~,AAAAAEvyZyE~,hjAiHwqzIV8iQlR-YHXVMxYOE-958fbo&bctid=45761357001

June 7, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

Michelle Rhee is a hot ass mess Fred.

I haven't forgot about this
http://rokdrop.com/2009/11/23/michelle-rhee-linked-to-kevin-johnson-sex-scandal-cover-up/

June 8, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterTruth P,

@ Fred, time and again, when you come to this site, you show yourself to be as right wing and politically reactionary as the George Bushes, Michelle Rhees, et.al. of the world.

You quote from the MacIver Institute site? ARE YOU FRIGGIN' SEROUS? Those folks are also right wing, pro-big business, pro-privitization of public services, pro-charter schools and vouchers AND DELIBERATELY ANTI-WORKING CLASS.

If you have health insurance from your employer that also covers DOCTOR-APPROVED prescriptions, then I have no problem with that, so long as the prescriptions they cover are indeed medically necessary and sometimes Viagra is medically necessary. Just like birth control pills/devices, etc. Shame on you for trying to make a big deal of the situation with Viagra. :( :(

June 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

@Reese so it’s ok for you to exercise your option to home school your child/children because the options that were available to you didn’t meet your criteria. But, other parents shouldn’t be allowed the same opportunity?

Yeah ok!

Visiting schools, reviewing curriculum, facilities etc is what many parents do. And just because that one school didn’t meet your standards doesn’t mean that it’s indicative of them all. Hell, there are many schools public, private, and parochial and charter that have issues.

Reese wrote “It seems as if many parents hear the word "charter", see the uniforms, extended hours and the charismatic admin and they automatically think their kid is getting a great education. That is the problem - charters rely on parents being completely and totally frustrated with their local schools.”

And you are partially correct and anytime a parent see’s that something isn’t working at their school and has enough brain power to fill out an application and send them somewhere else speaks volumes that they want something better. So A) The school that they are leaving needs to become savvy enough to make changes to keep their customer. B) The next school needs to use the “ uniforms, extended hours and charismatic administration” as a starting point to wheel them in and get them involved and start working with them to understand how the curriculum at the school works and what they need to do to play their part.

Reese wrote “Also, many charters started popping up in areas where the Latino population had increased and white parents did not want their kids going to school with "those people" but they couldn't afford to send their kid to a private……. Some have ties to radical religious and social groups yet still receive taxpayer dollars.”

They have been doing this since Brown vs. The Board of Education “The first segregation academies were created in the late 1950s as a result of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling Brown v. Board of Education, which required public school boards to eliminate segregation "with all deliberate speed." Because the ruling did not apply to private schools, the creation of segregation academies was a way to keep segregation intact.”
http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?

q=cache:H2loTfBDRYQJ:en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segregation_academies+virginia+private+schools+history+desegeration&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us&source=www.google.com

The only lynch pen is that Charter Schools receive public money so they by law have to accept all. Now if they don’t they are setting their already financially fragile school up for a big lawsuit. As far as radical holler at me about the Catholic Schools, who in my neck of the woods are turning charter. What happen with those priests again?

From the comments it seems that the experience with “charters” very by region. Some states have gone through the growing pains of charters and are now seeing what works, others are just getting started so they are going through the pitfalls and the pain.

June 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterthelildiva4u

@Fred Vouchers are the only issue that I will agree with Rhee on. Since I had a front row seat I can tell you that she was the worst. Rhee was about Rhee. Now the train left the station regarding charters in DC years before she arrived. Her mission was to dismantle the union, which was accomplished.

So here is a tidbit of info that will blow some minds. The former union president was voted out last year. Yeah the one who was painted by the press outside the DMV as fighting the change Rhee was making. Well, well, well he now working for her national non-profit.

Lastly, I went back and reviewed the issue that the NAACP had with the NYC school system and it seems that they were upset about city of fostering an “unequal system, where charter-school students get preferential use of the buildings’ common spaces, like auditoriums, cafeterias and gyms.”

Now NYC school system shouldn’t have the ability to provide charter schools that are in the same building as NYC Public school with better stuff and space that’s wrong and should be addressed accordingly.

June 8, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterthelildiva4u

revmamaafrika wrote:

If you have health insurance from your employer that also covers DOCTOR-APPROVED prescriptions, then I have no problem with that, so long as the prescriptions they cover are indeed medically necessary and sometimes Viagra is medically necessary. Just like birth control pills/devices, etc. Shame on you for trying to make a big deal of the situation with Viagra. :( :(

Oh, please.

No guy ever died from being unable to have sex when he wanted to. Viagra falls in the category of want like botox injections instead of a need like life-saving blood pressure medicine.

Hence, I stand by my original point that male union members who want Viagra should use their OWN money to buy it. Unions should be using our tax dollars for their primary duty: giving a quality education to the next generation of Americans.

June 9, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

@ Fred, it can get tricky when your employer's health insurance gets picky-wicky about what devices, treatments, procedures are covered and which ones are not.

I personally have no problem with Viagra being covered, nor do I have a problem with a vasectomy, prostrate exams, etc., being covered. If it helps a man and his partner's quality of life, so be it. Now do all union money come from the tax payers OR FROM UNION MEMBERS DUES AND SOCIALLY RESPONSIBLE INVESTMENTS? Huh? :)

June 9, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

revmamaafrika wrote:

@ Fred, it can get tricky when your employer's health insurance gets picky-wicky about what devices, treatments, procedures are covered and which ones are not.

I personally have no problem with Viagra being covered, nor do I have a problem with a vasectomy, prostrate exams, etc., being covered. If it helps a man and his partner's quality of life, so be it.

Is it me or does the above make union members seem more self-centered instead of child-centered?

Suddenly, the NAACP teaming up with a teacher's union make sense. After all, the NAACP has a long and sordid history of supporting self-centered Black adults (gangsta rappers, gang rapists, etc.) over innocent Black kids.

June 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

MommieDearest wrote:

This is why I'm suspicious of the largely Republikkkan support of school vouchers. Trust, if enough of "other" children start flooding private schools with the aid of vouchers, all the private schools need to do is raise the tuition. They can still keep out who they want to keep out, then those "other" children will go where?

Then, why not start a scholarship for pood Black kids so they can attend the private schools?

Only the most trifling Black person would not sign on for such a noble effort.

June 10, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterFred

My children have been in PUBLIC and PRIVATE schools. Schools, like neighborhoods are made up PEOPLE. When parents are engaged and invested in their child's education, it doesn't really matter if the school is a charter, public or private school.

A truth that we don't want to face is many of the failing schools in urban neighborhoods are run BY US.

What people want is CHOICE. Parents, who have a CHOICE, and are interested in EDUCATING their child, would rather not have them in a school over run by gang culture.

June 14, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterVinindy

Again, we are deliberately being set up by folks on the issue of charter schools/vouchers v. public schools. This article from Black Agenda Report explains it extremely well, in historical detail:

http://blackagendareport.com/content/how-corporate-right-divided-blacks-teachers-unions-and-each-other

Thanks!

June 15, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

Well, perhaps I'm a fool for trying to keep up with the NAACP, but it's making me dizzy; I really wish they could be more consistent in their support for civil rights.

On the issue of public v. charter schools in NYC, they are on the right side, but went about it the wrong way, then you look over in the other direction and they are supporting the merger of AT & T with T-Mobile; AT & T workers having unions and T-Mobile being hostile and nasty to even hearing the word "union."

Oh, and of course, the NAACP and several other civil rights groups are also supporting the merger 'cause AT & T gave them a bunch of money. Clearly the NAACP neve hear of net neutrality and how important that is for women, people of color and other often marginalized groups of people. Oh well. :(

June 16, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterrevmamaafrika

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