Prairie Middle School

Discussion in 'The Cesspool' started by D'ster, May 23, 2006.

  1. D'ster Registered Senior Member

    For years, schools have been trying figure out why minority students don't perform as well as Caucasian students on standardized tests.

    District leaders say the problem is a simple as black and white.

    "Before the last couple of years students and teachers wouldn't communicate about race," said Prairie Middle School teacher Chad Blood. "But, this year we've definitely opened up the discussion. We've, quite frankly, blown the lid off it."

    Blood has a class made up of all boys, all black or Hispanic. District leaders think they learn differently from white students, so they should be taught differently. "We are making gains in closing the gap by doing certain strategies," Blood said.

    For the first time this year, teachers across the district employed strategies like teaching minorities in groups because one study shows they learn better in collaborative settings. They're using more racially relevant material, like books on African-Americans, to keep students engaged in the subjects.

    Prairie Middle School has eliminated all remedial programs to create an atmosphere of high standards instead of letting minority students wallow in mediocrity.

    Prairie Middle School Principal Kandy Cassaday says test results have always been predictable so something drastic was needed to spur improvement.

    "We have to really decide what it is we need to do in schools to make that happen," Cassaday said. "So, doing nothing is not an option. Is this going to work? We hope so."

    Black and Hispanic students are embracing the change. "All the differences are coming together to make it a better experience in school," said Hispanic 8th Grader Emmy Caraveo. "And, it helps people feel better because they know they're not alone."

    Some parents say the move is bold. "In order to cure the gap, you do have to look at the causes as to what's causing it," said parent Cheryl McDonald. "Some of these things aren't going to be comfortable. I think it's more important that our kids are achieving."

    However, critics say Cherry Creek's strategy is just another form of racism. Two recent editorials in local newspapers blast the program.

    Metro State Education Professor Lupe Martinez did not study Cherry Creek's curriculum specifically, but he frowns on the idea. "We function the same neurologically," Martinez said. "I don't want them teaching, thinking they can teach Mexican-American kids one way and African-American kids another way. It's inherently discriminatory."

    Though test scores from this year are not back, students and teachers say it's working that students are more active in class and grades seem to be improving. "I think there are improvements. I see the guys goofing off in class and I see them working hard now," Wilson said. "They're getting good grades, A's and B's, and I congratulate them for it."

    District leaders think this strategy will not only close the achievement gap, but it will help all students across the district improve. Cherry Creek is in the first year of a three year model created by a Pacific Educational Group based in California.
  2. Guest Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  3. D'ster Registered Senior Member

    Blacks and hispanics want there own public schools, and the whiteys are afraid to comment.
  4. Guest Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.
  5. ReighnStorm The Smoke that Thunders Registered Senior Member

    I agree with some of the article. I went to an all black private school and we definately worked better and achieved many high test scores over the years. The school/university has been open for well over 100 years and many scholars come from this all black school. Now don't get me wrong. Blacks, whites, forth and so on can all learn and be educated in the same schools. It's the school system working as if still in the 1950's that needs to change!
  6. Guest Guest Advertisement

    to hide all adverts.

Share This Page