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Not in My Back-Quad

March 31, 2009
WILMINGTON, OH - DECEMBER 18:  Children in the...
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News: Black Men and Remedial Education – Inside Higher Ed.

I will, in this comment, take race off of the table (sort of): As evidenced by the first comment above, remedial education and “Universities,” at least for the alumni, shouldn’t mix.  It seems, on the surface, to water down the degree somehow, to lessen the achievement, to let “them” in.

I see this as categorically wrongheaded.  College (read “Universities”) instructs not only in the higher eds, but also in the larger social functions.  It is no wonder to me that the men in the study (where are the low-achieving women?  No, really.  Where are they?) did better with a social network.  That is what college, at least Freshman year, is all about.  Those who succeed, those with the high “merits” to enter university, are, on the whole, those with a social support system.

Now, to take the anecdote from above, the young man who didn’t test well…perhaps there is a learning disability at play.  Plenty of very smart, “worthy” underachievers don’t test well due to some sort of learning hindrance.  Are they less worthy?  No.

This article points to, and the first comment exemplifies the ugly, elitist side of Higher Ed.  I find that line of thinking distasteful.

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One Comment
  1. brokeharvardgrad permalink
    March 31, 2009 5:32 pm

    The majority of remedial education classes I taught were composed of minority students, particularly young black men. It was no coincidence to me that the minority population showed up in remedial classes, because sometimes class composition is merely a reflection of social structure. What always makes me sick is the white guys, hello Inside Higher Ed, who are in these positions continually define these men in terms of color. Are they not men who have had low-income backgrounds? Why must race come into this if the authors did not think it important? Why not have remedial courses in public institutions? There are public schools that have remedial courses all the way through the educational spectrum, why would universities be exempt?

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