Race/Schools Queens, New York, Is Research Paper

Length: 8 pages Sources: 8 Subject: Teaching Type: Research Paper Paper: #68375028 Related Topics: Hills Like White Elephants, Achievement Gap, Parents Involvement, Race
Excerpt from Research Paper :

If students are misbehaving, they are not engaged in their lessons. Behavior management is, unfortunately, a priority focus at Springfield Gardens, to the detriment of instruction. This is the point that the three interviewees continued to stress. None of them blamed the teachers for failing to engage students; the fault, as they see it, lies squarely with the students whose families apparently do not place a high value on education. The students, as Gordon, Benton and Johnson see it, are products of the culture in which their parents live.

The three frequently compared and contrasted the students of today with students of generations past. Students in "the good old days" did not misbehave the way students do "these days." That point was made clear, particularly in interviews with Benton and Gordon. Benton recalled a childhood outside the United States where school, he implied, was much more rigorous. It would appear that, in his mind, an American education is a bit below par compared to that which he was able to avail himself. He also referenced poor behavior and drew comparisons between "then" and "now." There is a superiority implied in Benton's comments. Although his interview was, for the most part, positive, upbeat, and laden with accolades for Springfield Gardens' principal and teachers, one is left with the distinct impression that Benton feels today's students do not quite measure up. He never mentions race or socio-economic status; student behavior and achievement is linked to place and culture. Students in his day, in the old country, did as they were told and participated in more rigorous academics.

Like Benton, Principal Gordon recalls fondly the "good old days" when he was a student, noting that most teachers were white, parents were involved, and discipline issues were minimal. Gordon could have been reciting three separate observations and yet because they come all in one breath, one is left with the distinct impression that Gordon is finding causality: white teachers, involved parents = few discipline problems. Gordon's comment is the single mention of race in the three interviews, but in many ways it set the tone for the discussion about negligent parents and the negative impact on students' school performance. White becomes equated with "involved" and "supportive," whereas minorities become equated with sending children to school ill-prepared to learn.

The expectations for students at Springfield Gardens do not seem to be particularly high, although the school's mission statement would have one believe otherwise. As McNeal (1999) points out, "One of the most persistent findings in stratification research is that an offspring's subsequent attainment is highly correlated with the education of offspring's parents." At Springfield Gardens, there is limited parental involvement, which the interviewees perceived as lack of interest in the educational process. The Springfield Gardens community is comprised of working class generation of people who do not rise above working class status.

Benton believes that students only need to come to Springfield Gardens ready to learn: Gordon believes he is providing strong leadership and that all children have an equal opportunity to learn at his school. He once again referred to the demographics of his student population when discussing education as "the great equalizer." He is realistic enough to recognize that discrimination still takes place. His own achievement against the odds had nothing to do with race or socioeconomic status, as least as he tells his story. Gordon recalled that he was at the bottom of his high school class but eventually graduated from Fordham University because he decided to apply himself to his studies. He said he uses himself as an example to illustrate to his students that anything is possible.


It is impossible to know how much race is a factor in the limited success of Springfield Gardens' students. Principal Gordon seems to suggest that students did better in school in the old (white) days, when parents had the "luxury" of working regular hours so they could spend more time being involved in the education of their children. The solution to the problem of what some writers call the "achievement gap" between white and Black students could certainly start with administrators like Gordon, who need to do more than give lip service to high standards for all students. Administrators, teachers and school communities must have high expectations for everyone. They must stop focusing blame on poor parenting and low socio-economic status. It is not that these factors do not adversely affect students; of course they do. Schools can continue to encourage parent involvement but must seek ways to boost student achievement whether or not parents are actively supportive. Community organizations such as the YMCA will, hopefully, continue to offer meaningful after-school and summer activities to foster the kind of culture that supports school success. It is not productive to assign blame. Schools and community organizations can work together to support students' academic achievement by having high expectations for both academics and behavior. They must strive to create an atmosphere in which education is valued and in which they truly believe students can succeed. Only then can the culture begin to change and pave the way to success for future generations.


Bali, V.A., & Alvarez, R.M. (2003). Schools and educational outcomes: What causes the "race gap" in student test scores? Social Science Quarterly 84 (3)

Biddle, R. (March 7, 2011). The condemnation of black children to dropout factories must end. Dropout Nation. Retrieved from http://dropoutnation.net/2011/03/07/condemnation-black-children/

Lewis, a.E. (2001). There is no race in the schoolyard: Color-blind ideology in an (almost)

all-white school. American Educational Research Journal 38 (4), 781-811.

McDermott, R., Raley, J.D., & Seyer-Ochi, I. (2009). Race and class in a culture of risk. Review of Research in Education 2009-33, 101-115.

McNeal, R.B., Jr. (1999). Parental involvement as social capital: Differential effectiveness on science achievement, truancy, and dropping out. Social Forces 78 (1), 117-144.

Noguera, P.A. (2004). Racial isolation, poverty, and the limits of local control in Oakland.

Teachers College Record 106…

Sources Used in Documents:


Bali, V.A., & Alvarez, R.M. (2003). Schools and educational outcomes: What causes the "race gap" in student test scores? Social Science Quarterly 84 (3)

Biddle, R. (March 7, 2011). The condemnation of black children to dropout factories must end. Dropout Nation. Retrieved from http://dropoutnation.net/2011/03/07/condemnation-black-children/

Lewis, a.E. (2001). There is no race in the schoolyard: Color-blind ideology in an (almost)

all-white school. American Educational Research Journal 38 (4), 781-811.

Cite this Document:

"Race Schools Queens New York Is" (2011, March 08) Retrieved June 26, 2022, from

"Race Schools Queens New York Is" 08 March 2011. Web.26 June. 2022. <

"Race Schools Queens New York Is", 08 March 2011, Accessed.26 June. 2022,

Related Documents
Queen Mary Adare Begins the
Words: 1383 Length: 4 Pages Topic: Literature Paper #: 54019419

Even after she loses her miracle making ability, Mary is capable of profound insights. "Everything that happened to him in his life," she wonders of her brother, at one point, as she is driving in her car towards the end of the novel. "All the things we said and did. Where did it go?" As she "didn't have an answer," so she "just drove," reflecting "once I had caused a

How Does Race Function in Accordance to Gender Identity in the Movie...
Words: 1173 Length: 3 Pages Topic: Family and Marriage Paper #: 92987904

Race and Gender in the Movie Entre Nos Entre Nos One of the most common cities in the United States for Colombian immigrants to flee to, like Mariana and her family did in the 2009 film, Entre Nos, is to the projects of Jackson Heights in Queens, New York, known by the residents as "El Chapinerito" which is named after the city of Bogota in their country. Many Colombian immigrants left the

Nursing Community Assessment
Words: 2602 Length: 10 Pages Topic: Family and Marriage Paper #: 51495013

Nursing Community Assessment It is moral responsibility of the Government and the nursing organizations to maintain the health standard in any country. However, it is not wholly in the hands of these organizations but other departments must also contribute for this cause. This study is focused on the county of Astoria, Queens, New York for helping the nurses in doing their job in the right way. The study highlights the demographics, major

Ethnography: A Comparative Study of
Words: 1973 Length: 7 Pages Topic: Family and Marriage Paper #: 86331314

More than one example would support the author's ability to make generalizations about gender related power struggles within the community. Stack conducted a formal quantitative study in Appendix A (Stack, p. 130) to support that conclusions that were drawn in the qualitative portion of her survey. The statistics that she found through a study of 200 AFDC case studies supported the assumption that the families she portrayed did represent typical

Teen Pregnancy and Parenting on
Words: 22066 Length: 75 Pages Topic: Children Paper #: 31255423

Of these elements, they found anxiety sensitivity to be directly linked to lower levels of educational advancement. Anxiety sensitivity mainly comprises symptoms of anxiety leading to fear due to a certain belief that anxiety has dangerous somatic, psychological, or social penalties. In one study scholars found that the basic forms of fears were the playing field for a broad spectrum of fear-stimuli and they found that these basic forms of

Stickball: A Window Into America's
Words: 3880 Length: 12 Pages Topic: Sports Paper #: 24043015

The article remarks with respect to asphalt that "a baseball will get ruined on a surface like this: it's too dense and hard for asphalt or brick, and the canvas-like surface of the ball will get chewed up. Not to mention other problems: in densely populated areas, there are a lot houses near school yards with glass windows, and we all know what happens when a baseball hits a