In my last post, I shared why immigration is not the top concern in the Hispanic community, despite the media’s attempt to push this issue to the forefront of our attention. The three issues Hispanic Americans are most focused on are jobs, education, and healthcare. Today, I’m sharing my thoughts on education.
Historically, Hispanics have had to fight for equal access to education. In 2018, more than 2.8 Hispanic children were enrolled in Texas public schools – a higher enrollment percentage than any other race in the state. However, Hispanic children also account for the most economically disadvantaged race in the Texas public education system.
One way the Hispanic community has worked to gain equal footing is through the charter school program. And while there are some fantastic charter schools out there, I see three issues with this approach:
- Most educators and administrators are white, leading to a subtle racial divide that proliferates the idea that Hispanics are disadvantaged
- Charter schools don’t get new buildings – they are often given schools or churches when an organization outgrows its old building. As a result, most properties aren’t in great physical shape.
- Children attending charter schools may not have the same educational opportunities such as field trips, art & music experiences, sports teams and other extracurricular activities that can provide better advantages for college entrance.
My generation worked hard to open the door for access to better education. But the playing field is still not level and our children still do not have equal opportunities. We must continue fighting for better schools, better opportunities, and better representation among educational leaders.