If we examine today’s public school systems, especially those in Black and Latino communities, it is hard to envision a system that could be worse, or more dysfunctional.
We have, in fact, a mis-education system, one designed to do more harm than good.
Many cities are experiencing a 50% dropout rate. In cities like Baltimore, these dropout rates soar to over 70%.
In the richest nation on earth, this is nothing short of scandalous.
Why is this so?
Because political elites, in service to business elites, are intent on selling off society’s educational assets to the privatization industries.
In a word, it’s about money, pure and simple.
It’s a certain kind of politics that literally sells out children’s educational inheritance.
This is a politics where business interests reign supreme even over the most fundamental function of the state – teaching its young.
How do we begin to address this long train of failure?
During the heyday of the Movement, groups across the country erected their own schools called Freedom Schools.
They taught lessons based on the real world, real life, about history, politics, social change, and the like. And they gave kids a hook into where they stood in life.
As today’s Baby Boomers age, they present a great opportunity to utilize a valuable educational resource to rebuild Freedom Schools, to staff them and teach in them.
By so doing, two social groupings help each other, with Boomers helping children, and children providing a great opportunity for older people to volunteer and serve the children.
Our public school system is largely nonfunctional, for the political system has corrupted its basic role in society.
People, in community, in a social movement, can rescue this failing institution, by re-tasking it to serve the needs of children.
By so doing, we learn valuable lessons from the past, to draft it into the future, to knit two generations together, and make the whole stronger.