To be young, gifted, and Black

I just dropped my son off for his 5 day Japanese intensive at the CSUS Academic Talent Search. I first want to say that I am not paranoid and I am not a bigot. I had to have what I like to call the “uncle Joe” discussion with him before I signed him in. I wanted him to recognize the lack of diversity in the student body for the program.
“Milo, do you notice anything about the students you see here?”

His first answer was that they were all alone. Then I clarified my question.

“Milo, do you notice anything about the kids and the color of their skin?”

He said they were all white. I don’t think I am creating a paranoid kid when I explained to him that many of the kids here were white and Asian for a REASON. I explained that in special circumstances such as this enrichment program, it is EXPECTED that whites and Asians be here. The general thought is that they have parents who either recognize the importance, have the money, have the time, care enough about their child’s education or a combination of all of these to want to send their kids here.

I can’t wait to see how Milo’s first day went. Either way it will be a teaching moment to remind him that it should not be a special case to be “Young, Gifted, AND Black”. It should be a blessing and an opportunity to grasp the brass ring as well.

Why is it not “important enough” or “out of reach” or unaffordable” or “just for those rich white and Asian kids”?

Why does society allow us a window of opportunity to doubt ourselves that continues through generations and leaves whole sectors of certain nationalities in the academic dust?

Read more later… I WILL share my opinion on these thoughts later.

Goddess

Advertisements