"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Money For Tanks And Tear Gas, But None For Education

From The Real News Network:

Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou is a Freeman Fellow with the Fellowship of Reconciliation. A St Louis, MO, native, the Rev attended high school there and has strong family ties to the area. He is the Pastor for Formation and Justice at the First Baptist Church in Jamaica Plain, MA, and is spending the summer as a Scholar in Residence at the Martin Luther King Education and Research Institute at Stanford University. 

"I was speaking with a schoolteacher in the Ferguson-Florissant School District the other day, and she was saying that it amazed her that all of this money for tanks and tear gas--yet she had to write a grant to get iPads for her students and had to personally buy dictionaries for her students. And so the kind of economic, disproportionate crisis, in terms of the way in which people are experiencing deprivation, should all bring us to our knees.

I think the numbers are in 2013 some $450 million have been provided to municipalities vis-à-vis in-kind contributions from the Pentagon, combined with other resources spent for the militarization of police. Yet teachers have to spend their own money to buy dictionaries. And so that is a metaphor for our situation, that the dictionary, the language, the discourse of democracy is so impoverished that perhaps the only word that we should be using in the lexicon of American democracy is shame."

To listen to the entire interview, click here.

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