Black Educators' Support for Chapter 1 Urged
Concerned that American blacks have become educationally polarized, U.S. Representative Mervyn M. Dymally, Democrat of California, last week urged 300 specialists in the education of black children to continue their support for the federal Chapter 1 compensatory-education program.
"Some of us have gained an education [and] have experienced the satisfaction of success,'' said Mr. Dymally, who is black. "But literally millions of the youngest in our family are not being educated.''
The Congress is currently considering legislation to reauthorize the $3.9-billion Chapter 1 program until 1993.
In addition to Mr. Dymally's keynote address, educators and policymakers attending the National Conference on Educating Black Children in Hunt Valley, Md., heard presentations on effective-schools programs currently operating in predominantly minority communities.
Faustine Jones-Wilson, one of the conference's organizers, said the presentations were a follow-up to a "blueprint for action'' adopted at a conference last September. The guidelines, she said, outline the ways students, teachers, administrators, parents, the community, and policymakers can improve educational opportunities for black children.
"It's one thing to have this on paper,'' Ms. Jones-Wilson, a professor of education at Howard University in Washington, said. "It's another thing to get it into action across the country.''
"None of this is glamorous--but educating children rarely is,'' she added.
The blueprint, Ms. Jones-Wilson said, is "not theoretical--it's practical.''
"This aims to give everyone something to do, to stop making excuses, assessing blame, and to move forward,'' she said.
Six regional meetings will be held this fall to discuss the models presented at the conference and how they might be adapted to local conditions, Ms. Jones-Wilson said.--E.F.