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The Racial Disparities in Our Education System

Updated: Jan 10, 2021

By Arianna de la Cruz

Image retrieved from Center for American Progress

I wrote this article to debunk what now appears to be a political stance; the belief that white privilege is a hoax. The school discipline directly hurts student’s success, as black and Latinx students are more likely to face “hard discipline”, essentially being dehumanized.

At this point in history, we all know that the U.S. tends to dehumanize a whole minority for the actions of one or various individuals, leading to a moral exclusion that gives whites “permission” to verbally or physically express disgust or anger towards these minorities. Emmett Till, Trayvon Martin, and George Stinney are a few of the vast individuals that paid the price for a crime they did not commit. Essentially, they were deemed as “criminals” or “troublemakers” by white Americans solely due to their race. If we analyze each case closely, we can arrive at the conclusion that it wasn’t the odds that were against them, they weren’t unlucky individuals that just happened to be in the wrong place at a wrong time, it was their race that was used against them, and as matter of fact, got them killed.

A study by the American Psychological Association finds that black boys are seen as older and less innocent and that they prompt a less essential conception of childhood than do their White same-age peers. It is proven that these racial stereotypes shape a teacher’s response towards black kids after they misbehaved. Black/ape association predicted actual racial disparities in police violence toward children. Therefore, we can reach the conclusion that “hard discipline” and racial stereotypes fundamentally make it easier for their white peers to be considered “outstanding students” favoring them and their path to success.

A compendium of studies, which allowed researchers to control for 83 different variables in isolating the effect of race alone on disciplinary actions, found that African-American students had a 31 percent higher likelihood of a school discretionary action, compared to otherwise identical white and Hispanic students. Discrimination and hard disciplinary actions have psychological side effects that affect the student’s journey to pursue academic success, reinforcing white privilege. The fact you as an individual have never experienced or have never been aware of it is not enough evidence of it being a hoax. It’s just an error in your reasoning process.

Written by Arianna de la Cruz

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