Iowa State wide receiver Hakeem Butler talks about all the adversity he’s faced throughout his career.
I read through the “Plan sets different goals for minority students” article Sept. 19. It outlines a new Iowa Department of Education program. It specifically states the example that grade level reading goals for third-graders will be 54 percent for black students, 65.9 percent for Hispanic, 80.6 percent for Asians and 83.1 percent for white students by 2021. I see no way to put a positive spin on this policy. How is this not insulting at best and racist at worst?
Here are a couple of better ideas for the Department of Education. 1. Allow all preschool age children to go to Head Start. If there is a money issue, use a weighted scale based on income to cover the cost of those able to pay. Allowing children from less affluent or less educated households to form relationships with children outside their normal sphere could help them gain a different perspective on education and learning. 2. Mentors. Nearly 50 years ago at Amos Hiatt, successful students were asked and volunteered to go to the nearby elementary school to tutor students in need. This can be done cost-free by many people from the community. Peers, teens, empty nesters, grandparents, community and business leaders.
The color of one’s skin or household income should not be used to downgrade expectations. The implication is that you are not as capable as your wealthier and or whiter counterparts. Setting the bar low will neither encourage success in school, nor prepare our children with the education and drive needed to succeed in either post-high school education or the job market.
— Steve Lame, Des Moines
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