The Trump administration is moving backwards to emulate former Bush-era policies regarding education and race. Trump rescinding Obama-era policies on diversity among colleges is an attack on not only his legacy, but all American schools.
What This Means
With Trump and his administration’s work to rollback these guidelines, students of color will have to compete on an unequal playing field to get into college. Factors that take in resources, previous schooling, or the history of that particular cultural background and why they may not be as academically successful as that of a white, male, Christian student, will no longer be taken into consideration when marginalized students apply to mostly white colleges and universities.
The Hypocrisy Of Current Affirmative Action Legislation
The idea that school admissions boards should adopt a “color-blind” mentality when reviewing college applications is being willfully ignorant towards how race has such an effect on minorities’ schooling from the moment they enter the education system. It is no secret that schooling in America hasn’t always been equal when it comes to race. From enslaved Africans being forced into illiteracy (by law), “separate but (un)equal” court rulings, and schools in low-income, mostly POC-inhabited areas, the U.S. government hasn’t always made students of color a priority. These schools have older textbooks, crumbling infrastructure, and understaffing.
Race, which has always been a determining factor in the lives of marginalized people, still affects them in areas like education. Many oppositionists of Obama-era Affirmative Action guidelines would agree that minorities are getting too much help, when in fact, it’s the current policies in place that aren’t enough. The mere thought of ripping away the barely sufficient institution of Affirmative Action would do more harm than good.
Instead of reversing the policies of Affirmative Action that have made small waves in the education system, the Trump Administration should focus on enacting policies that would go hand-in-hand with Affirmative Actions. Our students of color need assistance upon graduation, so that they can breakthrough in industries where they are just as qualified for the positions.
Students of color need more than Affirmative Action, not less. They need a better foundation to begin with. Students of color need less schools with metal detectors that make them feel like criminals, as this invokes the “school to prison” pipeline agenda”, and need more up-to-date computers, books, and teachers that look like them.
Policies that include these requirements would help tremendously. Also, ones that enforce courses that deal with financial literacy, mental health, and proper college preparatory skills and academics would help make the socio-economic gap in education that much smaller.
What students experience through school shapes them as future citizens. As these students go on to apply to colleges, they need the extra push that would make the playing field level enough for them to get just a taste of the privilege that their white counterparts have been receiving for years. If the Trump Administration cannot understand that, then these students’ futures and the future of our country is at risk.
Image Attribute: Pixabay