Black parents have enough to worry about just by virtue of having a black child. We worry about our black babies' safety every day when they leave the house, whether they are walking or driving. In addition, we worry about their safety; physically, mentally and emotionally, when they attend school, regardless of school model.
So it should go without saying that many black parents do not have time for this distracting "divide and conquer" strategy with this whole business about the NAACP Moratorium versus education reformers.
Uh, news flash, the pre-k through 12 education system is not about the grown folk and their feelings! It is about ensuring all children, regardless of their zip code having equitable access to safe school environments and quality educational opportunities - period!
For most parents and students, the bottom line is very clear! Schools are supposed to be for kids.
This Black mom does not care what color adult you are. If you choose to run a school, be a principal of a school, a teacher at a school, a district school board member, a charter school board member, support staff in a school or a lawmaker making decisions about a school, all of your adult decisions should be about protecting the educational rights of students, all students in both traditional schools and charters! And if you feel you can't educate all children fairly and treat them as human beings, then find another profession, preferably one that doesn't include other people's children. It is that simple - no gray areas.
Marginalized communities really can't afford to entertain privileged folk agendas at the expense of their own children's well-being. For example, with these oppressive discipline policies in both charters and traditional schools, Black parents are too busy trying to keep our babies out of the cradle to prison pipeline. So please, stop exploiting the fears and emotions of Black parents and playing on our desperation to ensure our babies receive a safe and high quality educational experience.
Again, ALL schools need to be great safe schools, that treat Black kids with dignity and respecting the rights of parents to do what is in the best interest of their child, regardless of zip-code!
I just want to say for the record that this black mom is so proud of Ms. Brittany Packnett, the Teach for America's vice president of National Community Alliances. I actually feel like a proud "auntie".
For Black parents and the poor, there must come a time when we don't allow those with the financial ability to choose great schools for their children to pit Black parents against Black parents in the traditional versus charter school battle.
As black parents we have to stop dividing ourselves. We MUST organize because we are NOT outnumbered, we are just out organized because we have very limited access to financial and innovative technology resources to organize effectively in this day and age.
And for those who are comfortable with the oppression of others, know and remember this. These are our babies we send to those classrooms everyday. And even without adequate financial resources and us Black parents having limited access to innovative technology, we will continue to rise and fight for equitable educational opportunities for our babies and all children. This includes holding traditional schools and charter decision makers accountable to the roles they play in our children's lives because schools are for kids and all kids matter, even Black kids!