Suggested Discussion Outline

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johnkarls
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Joined: Fri Jun 29, 2007 8:43 pm

Suggested Discussion Outline

Post by johnkarls »

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SUGGESTED DISCUSSION OUTLINE


A. SAD STORY

Many of you have called or e-mailed me to say what a sad story “Precious” was!!!

Even though the constant parental sexual abuse from an early age was heart rending, the world facing virtually every American inner-city child is equally sad – 99% living in single-adult households, virtually all of which are headed by a druggie who turns any receipts (e.g., welfare checks) over to the pusher so the kids have to steal just in order to eat.



B. HELEN KELLER

As mentioned in the Suggested Answers to our Short Quizzes, “identical twin” studies consistently show that inner-city children have the same intelligence on average as suburban kids.

The difference is the environment that prevents our inner-city children from achieving their potential!!!

In this regard, it is worthwhile to consider the example Helen Keller, a person who from birth was blind and deaf. She was thought to be an imbecile!!! But that was because nobody had been able to figure out how to communicate with her. A dedicated and determined person finally figured out that it would be possible to communicate with Helen through the sense of touch, eventually writing words on Helen’s palm. Following this breakthrough, it became obvious that Helen Keller was one of the most brilliant human beings who ever lived, and one of the most humanitarian!!!

Now consider our American inner cities!!! And the reason why America was so appalled to actually have to see inner-city conditions on TV following Hurricane Katrina – we weren’t upset over the devastation caused by the hurricane per se nearly so much as we were appalled by the generally-prevailing inner-city conditions that we were forced to see on the TV reports of the hurricane but which are on view constantly in any American city of any size for anyone who would care to look.

And now consider the “inner-city world” facing tens of millions of our American children every day –

1. Having to steal just in order to eat.
2. No intellectual stimulation, unless the kids have been able to steal a TV – but certainly no intellectual stimulation from peers or their single-adult druggie parents.
3. Having it drummed into their heads before they even reach Kindergarten age that they are worthless and not eligible to dream!!!
4. Facing the reality that the only way to “get by” is to become a “runner” by age 6 or 7 (because the pushers don’t want to get busted) or the girl friend of a runner.
5. Etc., etc.



C. OUR FEDERAL “MAGNET SCHOOL” PROPOSAL OF LAST MAY

(Please see our bulletin board = http://www.ReadingLiberally-SaltLake.org for details.)

ARE THERE ANY IMPROVEMENTS THAT CAN BE MADE???

NB: the essence of our proposal was creating schools that are so outstanding (and whose graduates our most prestigious American Universities would seek out for admission) that suburban students would vie for admittance AND THE KEY WOULD BE THAT ANY SUBURBAN STUDENT WOULD BE ADMITTED AND RETAINED ONLY IF S/HE AND HER/HIS FAMILY MENTORED AN INNER-CITY STUDENT.

In effect, just like the typical achievement of the tutors and mentors in Eugene Lang’s “I Have A Dream” Program, the prevailing single-digit high-school graduation rates in America’s inner cities can be transformed to 65-70% and beyond ONLY BY PROVIDING SURROGATE PARENTS (and siblings!!!)!!!

It should be noted that in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s 6/28/2007 reversal of “Brown v. Board of Education” by deciding in “Parents v. Seattle School District No. 1” that race cannot be used as a criterion to achieve diversity, our proposal recognized that any “magnet schools” would have to be federal rather than state/local. If we want to proceed on our own (please see the next section), this would probably mean that we would not even be able to obtain “charter school” status to provide the bulk of the funding, because charter-schools would be subject to the Supreme Court’s decision regarding state/local schools.



D. IN THE WAKE OF PRESIDENT OBAMA’S AND EDUCATION SECRETARY ARNE DUNCAN’S FAILURE TO LEAD US TO THE “PROMISED LAND,” WHAT CAN WE NOW DO AS INDIVIDUALS TO AT LEAST MAKE ENOUGH OF OUR “MAGNET SCHOOLS” A REALITY THAT THE “PROMISED LAND” WILL HAVE BEEN DEMONSTRATED BEFORE THE ARRIVAL OF A PRESIDENT WHO IS REALLY INTERESTED IN REAL CHANGE???

As noted in the last Q&A of our last Short Quiz –

“I look forward to the day when the Nobel Peace Prize is awarded to Bill Drayton and his organization, Ashoka" – Bill Clinton in a speech at the Global Philanthropy Forum in 2007 talking about a person and his organization that had provided “seed money” for 1,820 social entrepreneurs in 68 countries for novel ideas to effect change, including Muhammad Yunus and his Grameen Bank that actually won the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize for providing small loans averaging less than $1,000 to more than 7.1 million destitute Bangladeshi villagers, 97% of whom were women.

“Ideas create organizations and ideas blow them away” – Winston Churchill on frequent occasions.

Are we up to the challenge???

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