KTBS News in Louisiana is reporting that a principal has apologized after targeting black male students for a reprimand regarding standardized test scores:
On February 28, Price T. Young Middle School principal David Segers used the school’s intercom to call every African American male student to the cafeteria.
The meeting was to discuss student performance on a state standardized test.
Some parents, including Demetria McFarland, say the group was blamed for the school’s test scores not being higher. ”They were told that they were the reason that Price T. Young was not passing the TAKS test,” said McFarland. ”To me it was knocking down their self esteem. I don’t see the motivation behind calling out all African American boys to be singled out.”
Segers wouldn’t comment on camera, but in a written statement he said his intentions were never to be harmful. He said he was trying to motivate his students and encourage them to do their best on upcoming testing. He also apologized.
Segars may have had the best intentions, but for someone so concerned with academic performance, he doesn’t seem to have used his critical thinking skills here.
His insistence on treating students as members of a demographic group instead of individuals couldn’t possibly have been the most effective way to serve his goals. If he wanted to help African-American boys, he should have done it through a mentoring or tutoring program focusing on their needs. If his goal was to talk to students who were struggling academically, he should have pulled individual students out of class based on their personal test scores, not based on their race and gender.
Not to mention, if pep talk was really so inspirational, we hope part of his apology was to the low-scoring non-black students and girls who were deprived of it because they didn’t fit his generalizations.
Read more at KTBS News.