Concern about race goes back a long way

Opinion: Letters To The Editor

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I read your column about America to Me. [We're not where we need to be … yet, Ken Trainor, Viewpoints, Aug. 22] I'm looking forward to it.

But the achievement gap has not been an issue for a couple decades — more like 36 at least. When I served on the education committee of the 1982 Racial Diversity Task Force, this was the focus of our concern. I think a copy of the report is still at the Oak Park Public Library. I recall there was concern back then about students dividing up by race at lunchtime.

Teresa Powell

Oak Park

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John Duffy  

Posted: September 4th, 2018 12:24 PM

Thanks for a little history. That Task Report was a key document in moving D 97 forward for at least a number of years in the 1990's in pledging itself to not allow racial segregation to take place in classrooms where chances for greater racial equity in learning are made possible. Racial segregation, by design or default, will harm students of color and white students as well. See the 1990 D 97 Strategic Plan for an explicit embrace of those since abandoned efforts. The history of "tracking" in schools goes back generations where schools, programs and opportunities were systematically made separate and unequal by whites who controlled American education practices. John Duffy, Chairperson Committee for Equity and Excellence in Education

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