|Rights||In Copyright (InC)|
|Rights Holder||Marlene Marie Young, Wordpower, Inc.|
|Publisher||Digitized by J. Willard Marriott Library, University of Utah|
EDUCATION Page 6 RACIST SCHOOL SYSTEM “There are none so blind as those who refuse to see.” The Salt Lake City Board of Education would have to be blind if they did not see the deep hurt and anger of students and parents Thursday evening, April 30, at a rally in the Central City Gym. Grievences, complaints and opinions were leveled against the board and the public schools in rapid fire succession. Board members present, Lamonte Peterson, board vice president; Robert R. Sonntag, Mrs. Ester Landa, Carl R. Child, Nicholas G. Smith, William W. Cannon, Mrs. June Y. Orme, Glen S. Burt, Mrs. Ada L. Burt sat quietly during the three hour rally and did not offer any dialogue concerning the many charges brought against it and at one point, when Mrs. Michael Cunningham asked why all schools were not using intregated textbooks, the board vice president answered, “Why, I don’t know, I thought we were.” This was a clue as to the awareness on the part of the board to long standing problems in the schools. Mrs. Shirley Woodward has been battling with the school system, as have several other parents, for a long time. She has finally reached the conclusion that the only way to insure fair and equal treatment for her children is to attend school with them each day. The teachers may get tired and irratated at having to teach her along with her child but she has lost all faith in the system and their repeated promises for improvement. | Mr. Danny Burnett, NAACP, said one thing he’s sure of is that blacks are good athletes, so the athletic program in the Salt Lake City schools represent hard core segregation because you do not see representation of blacks on teams or participating in events. Roy Jefferson, Pittsburg Steelers, described the situation in Central City and the schools as “unreal”. He pointed out the urgent need of the center for equipment, supplies and operating money. The center is providing a place for young people to meet and learn but the community does not care enough about the people in this area to support it and maintain it. _ While the suggestion was made to “burn the--------- temple down”, another speaker said this would be foolish. “Why burn it down, they’d only build it back up again.” Several speakers charged any teacher who is Mormon is in actuality a racist as they are taught and believe blacks to be inferior. They cannot teach minority: students with this belief. Several student teachers advised the board to to demand that colleges and universities include studies on how to teach disadvantaged and minority students. . Mrs. Marie Darling, (National Welfare Right Organization) NWRO, told how her children are not allowed to participate in many school activities because they cannot afford the required fees. A former student at West High School told how he flunked a shop class send their children to _ private schools and still pay taxes to support the public school system. She referred to the “Mormon Syndrome” which does not expect blacks to perform in school, thus they often don’t. Mrs. Ruth Ross announced her intention to run as a representative on the school board. She read several complaints by black and brown parents involving racism and teacher slapping students. She advised that if she doesn’t make it this year at least she is sincere in her effort to get something done in the schools and maybe someone else will make it next year. American children. Give them a (WORDPOWER strongly supports chance now while they are Mrs. Ross as a candidate and will do young—why wait until they are 90 everything possible to help her win years old like I am. Believe me, it is a seat.) not easy to start kindergarten when It was brought out by several one is my age. I know through people that the blame for drop-outs experiance | would get an E for and failures in schools lies with the effort on my report cards. teachers and the administration. Students have been held responsible to now but facts prove this is not always true. The Board of DISCRIMINATION AGAINST THE Education was urged to finally get MEXICAN AMERICAN IN serious about education in our PUBLIC SCHOOLS schools and to realize their obligation to all students. By Mary Griego A sixty year old man brought South County home the pain inflicted by prejudiced people when they use — The Spanish speaking the derogatory term “nigger”. He community decided to have a said it hurts just as bad when you meeting with the Board of are sixty as it does when you are Education to do something about six. Parents suffer when their why Mexican-Americans are children are exposed to racism. It is suspended from school. demoralizing and causes a loss of I went with my problem. I am self-esteem and self-confidence. hurt because my boys have fought The meeting ended with the in Viet Nam (and another is now school board promising «some training in preparation to go) andI positive action and answers in the feel that if they are good enough to near future. We'll wait — for awhile. go over there to fight, they deserve an education in the public schools. Drop-Outs _ By Sylvia Vigil South County . I want to talk about young people. You know those young kids with long hair and the ones we refer to as teen drop-outs. First, I want to ask a question. Who, are the drop-outs and why? Who forces them to become drop-outs? Who makes these kids bums? Who do! We big wheels — Intelligent adults are responsible for this. If a child doesn’t behave properly in school, we expell him. Is this helping? Yes — we just produced a bum. We are helping society get worse. Hach child that is expelled from school is a loss to the country and to society. This individual needs help. Instead of finding out what his problem is, we call him disobedient, deplorable:, delinquent, and boom—out they go on the streets. has Branded a bum a month later, he long hair, no job, and no education. Aren’t we proud we just theft, that he returned and finished country. he failed in this class, he was kicked out of the athletic program. This, in turn, lead to his his education. Mary Adams, NAACP and representative of the “conservative, middle-class black community” said it was a crime such families must DO WE WANT SCHOOL dropping out of school and it was only because of a very perceptive judge who gave him the choice of going to school or to prison after a fee. Because Youth To Help Stop Racism In Schools Following are the goals of the newly organized NAACP Youth Branch. This program will work with students and the Salt Lake School system to help eliminate discrimination and racial problems in the schools. ‘GOALS: To provide a means for the students to express their opinions. To provide a means by which students can work to improve their educational, social and recreational opportunities. To provide an opportunity to develop leadership ability. To provide an opportunity for students to expand their interests beyond their school life. To provide an opportunity for students to receive counseling and guidance from empathetic adults. | To provide an opportunity for students to learn about educational and vocational opportunities available (Scholarships, etc. We expect 100% cooperation from the Guidance Department of the Board of Education) To provide a means through which a student can receive academic help if needed. To provide an opportunity for students to develop self-expression where it cannot be done within the school system. To provide an opportunity for students to develop self-esteem. To encourage the students to excel in all phases of school life and to stress the importance of education. This includes participation as a part of the school in athletics, dramatics, extra-curricular activities, etc. produced another bum. What do we do? We sit back and say these are the one’s that should be in Vietnam. These are no good, and as I said before, a loss to the country. We didn’t even give this bum a chance to get an education. He didn’t pass his test for the service, so he couldn’t die like a man for his because he did not have the $5.00 LN Let’s not strip these young kids of what God has rightfully given them — their dignity and the right to get an education. I am sure if you sit back and think of when you were young, youll remember you too were a problem child. A lucky one because you got away with it, but that is our problem. We got old and the memory part of: our brain deteriorates. We forget! We, the grown up adults, blame the children for things they don’t do. But, of course we have to blame somebody. They don’t make pot and booze, or cigaretts and such, but we adults do. We the intelligent adults. Let’s reduce the number of drop-outs by helping to make and produce good citizens out of our What happens unless a miracle happens. This bum that we made dies like a bum. Maybe he will get shot holding up a gas station or something. PROBLEMS? South County Community Council Inc. decided to attempt to keep communication open between the residents and the Jordan District School Board. A letter inviting the School Board to attend the mass meeting of the Resident’s Council and residents on May 20, 1970 has been sent to the Board.. We hope by bringing the residents needs and opinions on school matters to the School Board at this time, tensions. Residents we feel can that eliminate the crisis situation that exists in the Salt Lake Schools can be avoided if communication can be kept open. Feelings aired and situations can be solved before a crisis exists. Everyone. is invited to attend: 7:30 p.m., May 20, 1970, 8400 South Redwood Road. To encourage ALL students to respect the individuality of ALL SS people. METHODS All black students will be invited to a meeting and will be encouraged to bring their school friends. At the meeting, all students will be asked to complete a questionnaire devised by the group in attendance tonight to help them express their opinions regarding their school opportunities and problems. These questionnaires will be carefully compiled by the students and advisors and programs will be developed to meet their needs. Also, at this meeting, a committee will be selected to assemble the information from the questionnaires and report on the results. Another date will be set for another meeting at which the report will be _ presented and the group will take steps to organize more formally. WE WANT TO EMPHASIZE THAT THIS GROUP IS NOT BEING FORMED FOR BLACK STUDENTS ONLY. ALL STUDENTS WITH GENUINE CONCERN IN THESE AREAS WILL BE INVITED TO PARTICIPATE. ALTHOUGH THE MAIN GOAL OF THE GROUP WILL BE TO CORRECT INJUSTICES TO MINORITY STUDENTS, IT IS NOT THE GOAL OF THE GROUP TO ENCOURAGE POLARIZATION. WE ALSO WANT TO EMPHASIZE THAT THE YOUTH WILL DIRECT THE EFFORTS OF THIS GROUP. THAT IT IS THEIR GROUP AND THE ADULTS WILL BE INVOLVED IN AN ADVISORY CAPACITY AND TO HELP, BUT NOT TO RUN, THE PROGRAMS ESTABLISHED BY THE STUDENTS. SOME SUGGESTED PROGRAMS: 1. Summer Counseling Program (Using School Facilities) — (a) Help youth establish goals for themselves for the next year, (b) Help youth explore long range academic and vocational possibilities, (¢) Work with any youth who is having problems in school. 2. Student Advisory Council (The group described above. The youth will choose the name of their group. This name will serve for our reference.) — (a) The group will meet bi-weekly (or as decided by the group) to work out programs to resolve problems in the schools and to prevent the problems from developing., (b) The group will determine its own objectives. 3. Teen Club (Members of above council only.) — (a) To previde a place where teens can go for social activities, (b) Plan recreational activities, (c) Encourage the development of smaller interest groups such as ... athletic teams, dance groups, bands and vocal groups, etc. SOME SUGGESTED QUESTIONS FOR THE QUESTIONNAIRE: 1. How do you feel about the principal, teachers and counselors at your school? Are they helping you to plan your school program and solve problems you may have? 2. When you have a problem at school, who do you go to? Why? 3. How do you feel about the subjects you take at school? 4. What extra-curricular activities do you participate in at school? What would you like to see available to you? 9. What changes would you like to see at your school? ANY OTHER COMMENTS, SUGGESTIONS AND CRITICISMS: If you wish to talk with someone about your feelings about school or anything else, call: Mrs. Julie Scott, 292-3294: Mr. Eddie L. Brown 328-4333 or Mr. Jim Dooley, 322-2032.