". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Separate But Still Not Equal

Plans are underway in the city of Chicago for the opening of a new high school, to be named Social Justice Solidarity High School, in 2010. The school was originally conceived as a gay and lesbian only campus, but the intent now is to target "disenfranchised" students of all kinds who are feeling isolated or unfairly treated. According to the school's mission statement, "While the school will be open to all students, its special mission will be to provide a haven where students can feel safe and valued for who they are."

Two questions:

1) What does it say about the environment in Chicago's other schools that there is a need to create a new institution for the purpose of making students feel "safe and valued for who they are"? And what about the students who don't get to attend Social Justice Solidarity High School? Will they just have to get used to feeling endangered and belittled?

2) Do the people behind this enterprise really think that by throwing up a new building and giving it a new name they can make students be nice to each other?

Here's a suggestion for Mayor Daley and the Chicago Board of Education: before you put any more time and money into this effort, take a few hours to read George Orwell's Animal Farm. And remember that no matter how much you try to make everyone equal, some will always be more equal than others.

1 comment:

Elephantschild said...

How is segregation somehow better? Hmmmm? Didn't we already fight this battle in the this country?