Although we released our third annual Community Achievement Scorecard back in February, the data and the stories behind the data are still just as real and relevant today. For that reason, we’re revisiting some of the performers, speakers and themes resonating from the release event a few months ago.
One feature of the Scorecard is that it disaggregates the data wherever possible by race, economic status and language status. With disparities across the academic continuum, it’s clear that our community is not serving all of our children equitably. But what does that look like? What are the in-school and out-of-school factors that are leading to these disparities? And how can we begin to address these head-on? The three video excerpts each attempt to answer these questions in their own unique way:
“Dressing” performed by the African American Repertory Theater This short one-act play depicts an interaction between parent and son that is sadly all too familiar for African American families in Dallas and across America. It makes public a conversation that we must be willing to have as a community if we want to change the life outcomes of our children of color, who make up 80% of our student population.
Michael Sorrell, President of Paul Quinn College Drawing from his experience as president of a college with 84% of students Pell Grant-eligible and 70% with an expected family contribution of $0, Sorrell crystalizes the challenge as he sees it: “If we want to address our college readiness issue, we have to address our college-ready environment.” Said differently, “If I send an A student home to an F community, all of sudden he has a C life.” Sorrell’s words serve as a clear reminder that we all have a critical role to play in supporting both our schools and our communities.
Miguel Solis, Dallas ISD Board President Drawing from his experience as a former 8th grade teacher, Solis tells the story of one of his former students to make it clear that an equitable education is possible for all children. He challenges us to have the difficult conversations about race and equity while insisting that we recognize and capitalize on the strengths and assets that our students bring with them. For example, Dallas ISD’s Latino and English Language Learner student population could represent the future pipeline of bilingual educators who are in such great demand today.
Want to build your capacity to address racial equity? Join Dallas Faces Race if you haven’t done so yet. Don’t let that Scorecard sit on your desk either; use it to push for change! Share these videos and share the Scorecard itself. Visit http://commit2dallas.org/scorecard, where you’ll find a slide deck and one-pager to engage others in your organization, school and community.