When you look around our world today, you see an abundance of cultures, colors, and people. Yet, when you look around our community and our school, you don’t see what you would if you were taking the subway in New York City. When you walk down the hallways of our school, does it remind you of the world you see every day?
The organization Erase Racism Long Island says that “Long Island is heading in the wrong direction. Although the student population is becoming increasingly more diverse, in the last decade alone, the number of intensely segregated schools has more than doubled. With 125 school districts that mirror residential segregation, structural racism ensures that African American and Latino children are systematically denied access to high performing schools. To this day, the vast majority of black and Latino students enrolled in public schools are burdened by pervasive learning obstacles.” This organization is trying to provide information in hopes to increase awareness, but even more so, actions and change.
Studies have shown that racial integration in schools provides students with more opportunities to succeed. This racial integration of schools provides the environment to break racial stereotypes and help students become prepared for a world in which there are many cultures in workplaces and communities. Without this diversity in our own school, what are we supporting? It is easy for us to understand and to accept the different types of people in our country as just one person, but what good does that do if it isn’t acted on by our society as a whole? What does a predominately white school portray and contribute to in society? Is knowledge enough to create a community filled with accepting children and adults, or are we only able to create change by not just beliefs but actions?
photo credit: Erase Racism Long Island