Educational Choice

THINKING ABOUT RACE (December 2010) – From an email received in October from Fred Baldwin, Carlisle Friends Meeting, expressing some thoughts regarding school choice and how he feels that it relates to race :  I am convinced that Friends collectively are following a ‘tinfoil rule’ — all shine with no weight or substance.  Defining racism almost exclusively as a personal matter gets us off the hook for institutional racism, most obviously in public education.  I’m encouraged that both Pennsylvania gubernatorial candidates — including Dan Onorato, the Democrat — are supporting some form of school choice.  Quakers, who led the fight against slavery, look to be in the rear guard (if not actually the opposition) on treating urban black children as deserving of the same opportunities as white families who can afford to live in good school districts.  Honest people can disagree about how to do achieve more [school] choice, but I think failure to focus on the issue is one of our gravest sins of omission.”

Friends who wish to comment on this or any other “Thinking About Race” items, may do so at this website: http://racismwg.bym-rsf.net.  The BYM Web Manager has set this up as a kind of blog. You will first need to register by emailing webmanager@bym-rsf.net.

The Baltimore Yearly Meeting Working Group on Racism meets most months on the third Saturday from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm, usually at Bethesda Friends Meeting or Friends Meeting of Washington.  If you would like to attend, either on a regular or a drop-in basis, please contact clerk Elizabeth DuVerlie at eduverlie@jhu.edu.

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