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Campus Life

Hampton University launches National Center on African American Marriages and Parenting

Seventy-two percent of black babies are born to unmarried mothers today, according to government statistics. This number is inseparable from the work of Carroll, an obstetrician who has dedicated her 40-year career to helping black women.

“The girls don’t think they have to get married. I tell them children deserve a mama and a daddy. They really do,” Carroll says from behind the desk of her office, which has cushioned pink-and-green armchairs, bars on the windows, and a wooden “LOVE” carving between two African figurines. Diamonds circle Carroll’s ring finger.

Categories
Education

The Achievement Gap Problem Hits Home. Literally.

Below is my response to this article about an elementary school principal in Ann Arbor, MI, the city in which I went to school.  The synopsis: a Black principal started a group called “Lunch Bunch” for Black children.  The goal of this social and academic group was to help address the so-called “achievement gap” in education by helping these students to become more successful.  They took a school-sponsored field trip with just these children to see a Black rocket scientist talk about his job and his challenges and triumphs as a Black man in general.  The  community in Ann Arbor – the affluent, predominantly White city in which the University of Michigan is located – is apparently outraged over this principal’s “transgression”.

I graduated from Huron High school in Ann Arbor almost 20 years ago.  As a Black student, I was privy to, helped by, and hindered by all different types of programs to close this so-called “achievement gap” (yes, I do mean all of those verbs).  What I took from all of these meetings and trial-and-error programs were two things: 1) Our teachers, for the most part, had no idea how to teach Black children effectively and 2) no one cared enough to actually change things.  Nineteen years later, it appears that nothing has changed.