"The passing rates for black and low-income students are significantly lower in Mecklenburg's high-poverty schools than in Mecklenburg's diverse schools," says a letter-writer ("Not working for some," Nov. 22).
This is no apples-to-apples comparison. Blacks are no more a monolith than whites. Given housing patterns in Mecklenburg County, blacks in Mecklenburg's "diverse schools" are likely of higher socioeconomic status than those in its "high poverty schools." Scores correlate with social class.
But in any case, the pursuit of diversity, even if it were to produce a gain for some, requires continuous government coercion. Perhaps it's an opportune time to ponder on a less intrusive way to boost achievement. In organizing public schooling, we've been unwavering in our allegiance to the key principles of socialism: central planning by remote authorities and government monopoly in delivery of the service.
We permit no free-market dynamics in public schooling. The consequent rigidity, frustration, loss of freedom and lack of innovation has not much distressed us.
Perhaps it should.