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  [Arne] Duncan's twisted vision for our schools
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ContributorCraverguy 
Last EditedCraverguy  Feb 05, 2010 05:49pm
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CategoryOpinion
AuthorDanny Lucia
News DateThursday, February 4, 2010 06:00:00 PM UTC0:0
DescriptionHURRICANE KATRINA was "the best thing that happened to the education system in New Orleans," according to Arne Duncan, who unfortunately is not a diabolical Hollywood villain but the U.S. Secretary of Education.

Four years after the hurricane, there are barely half as many children in New Orleans public schools. That's 30,000 mostly African American boys and girls who have been driven from their homes, possibly permanently.

Besides this easily being the Cheneyist thing anybody in the Obama administration has said, Duncan's words are so striking because he claims he thinks of his education policies as "the civil rights issue of our generation."

But then, Duncan has always been a strange type of civil rights leader. On the day he claimed to speak out for this generation's civil rights issue, he was the "CEO" of the Chicago public schools, which is the fourth most segregated school system in the country, according to a study sponsored by the Center for Urban Research and Learning at Loyola University.

It's not just Chicago. All around the country, schools are about as racially integrated today as they were before Brown v. the Board of Education. Schools named after Martin Luther King are often exclusively non-white. This is like having a George Washington High with Redcoats for teachers.

There are no rewards in Duncan's "Race to the Top" program for states that desegregate their schools. To Duncan, however, segregation is so "last generation."
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