All kids should get a fair shot

Access to High-Quality Schools | 02/14/2020

Shawanda Tyson
Stand Indiana Fellow

It troubles me that white IPS students are four times more likely to pass our state’s exam than black students, and three times more likely to pass than Hispanic students. If this bothers you too, then join me in an effort to change this. Take action now to make sure all kids who attend IPS get a fair shot at success.

I’ve spoken to the IPS Board of Commissioners and Superintendent Alessia Johnson. I believe they are serious about having a racial equity mindset, but I want to be sure that real action is taken to uplift struggling schools and help kids who are suffering from an inequitable school system.

I wanted to see a school where white children and kids of color are all getting a fair shot, so I toured Christel House Academy South. On my tour, I realized that it doesn’t matter where a school is located, or what population or demographics they serve, as long as they are passionate about educating children.

On my tour, I spoke with students from kindergarten through high school. No matter their grade, they shook my hand, introduced themselves and could tell me what they were learning in class. I witnessed teachers asking tough questions in all grade levels and children politely holding up their hands, eager to answer. I witnessed children learning on computers and in groups. I saw kindness exchanged between students in the hallways. I saw teachers dedicated to their students’ success.

It’s time to change how people see IPS as a district, and we can do this by making sure black and brown students are getting the same opportunities to succeed as their white classmates. We can do this by making sure that every child is prepared to graduate from high school and fulfill their dreams.

After our tour ended, all of us parents came together and wrote an open letter to the IPS Board of Commissioners and Superintendent Aleesia Johnson calling on them to expand and partner with schools like Christel House Academy, which are doing a good job of closing the opportunity gap in our city.

Sign on to our letter today and join our movement to ensure kids of color are getting equal access to a great education.


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