‘How far have we come?’

Published 10:46 am Wednesday, February 15, 2017

One of the forerunners of eradicating segregation and racism was to integrate public school systems.

As a result of these purposes, many elements were encountered (i.e. marching, demonstrations and protesting) to promote and make provisions for affordable housing, equal job pay, voting rights and equal educational opportunities.

In the 1950s and 1960s, marching, demonstrations and protests were common to prohibit the mass racial segregation and racism upon black American students throughout the United States.

Most of us are familiar with the struggles, court cases, imprisonment and even death, in that it has taken these elements to minimize the efforts given, God-given and constitutional rights to ensure and appropriate educational opportunities.  

The status quo of our diverse public educational system has been part of our American lifestyle.

We have become complacent with our mode of public education and well-defined integrated system serving all students equally.

I was a part of this system — all students being educated with the best teachers, the best technology, the best support from parents and community.

Yet, on a visit to the Robert Russa Moton Museum, I stood staring in front of two locked doors locked with chains. At that point, I was overpowered by a revelation.

We unlocked the doors to integration and our black American students to equal education opportunities, but have we closed the doors to equal opportunities for American minority teachers to teach all students?

I’ll leave this to your discretion. You do the investigation, you do the math and you do the determination. Begin with your county’s school system. How far have we come? Have we locked the doors from inside? Have we given minority teachers equal opportunities to teach?

William H. McCargo is an author and president of the Charlotte County NAACP. His email address is mccargoh@gmail.com.