In 1985, the late Whitney Houston scored yet another chart-topping hit with her song, “The Greatest Love of All.” Lyrics to the famous ballad begin, “I believe the children are our are future.” Of course Whitney was right, and if the educational performance of the current crop of children in Detroit is indeed an indicator of the future awaiting that once great city, things are looking pretty bleak.
Last week the Trial Urban District Assessment (TUDA) released its 4th and 8th graders’ reading and math scores from the test known as the ‘Nation’s Report Card’ and for the third year in a row Detroit Public Schools (DPS) scored the worst among urban school districts.The DPS posted the lowest scores among the 21 cities that voluntarily took part in the TUDA.
Basically, hardly any of the city’s public school students are proficient in reading or math. In the DPS 96 percent of 8th graders are not proficient in mathematics and 93 percent are not proficient in reading. (Results compiled by the 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress tests published by the Department of Education’s National Center for Educational Statistics.)
This year’s DPS results show:
> In fourth grade math, 4 percent of Detroit students scored at or above proficient
> In eighth grade math, 3 percent of Detroit students scored at or above proficient
> In fourth grade reading, 7 percent of Detroit students scored at or above proficient
> In eighth grade reading, 9 percent of Detroit students scored at or above proficient
That Detroit was once one of the wealthiest, most vibrant cities on earth comes as news to no one. Neither is anyone shocked to discover that the city is now in ruins, filed bankruptcy and has been in the firm and exclusive grasp of liberal political domination for decades. When liberals are in control and see a problem or think they see a problem, what’s their solution? Spend more money on it, of course.Though only 4 percent of DPS eighth graders are proficient in math and only 7 percent in reading, guess what? In the 2011-2012 school year—the latest for which the Department of Education has reported the financial data –the DPS spent $18,361 per student!! It’s reminiscent of the dust up regarding the poor state of public education in Baltimore, another city that’s failing its children miserably and has been firmly in liberal control for decades. Following the Baltimore riots earlier this year liberal pundits began screaming, “The education system is to blame!” which focused a spotlight on Baltimore public schools. That light shone on the fact that Baltimore’s spending per pupil is second highest in the nation behind only New York City – another failing public school system in a city run by liberals for decades. These cities spend more per pupil than any others yet produce bottom-of-the-barrel results.
Detroit’s mayor is of course a liberal Democrat. Though elected in non-partisan races, Detroit’s City Council is likewise dominated by liberals. Naturally the city is dominated by liberal-leaning unions. The same liberals who have overseen this sorry state of educational affairs will pounce on the disastrous results presented in these reports and use them as an excuse to demand that even more money be pumped into public schools — knowing full well that much of it will be kicked back to the Democrat Party through their friends and supporters in the teachers unions. And while engaging in this pseudo money laundering scheme they’ll at the same time fight against any thing resembling reforms that may introduce competition to the DPS equation or that may give parents options for getting their children out of failing local schools where kids are literally being doomed.
The teachers unions will join forces with the Democrats, blame Republicans (even though there aren’t any) and force through more tax increases further draining the pocketbooks of what dwindling population is left. And the losers in this passion play? The children – who will be venturing out into a world that increasingly requires advanced technical skills let alone the ability to read.
As for the future of Detroit? Well, the woman sang it right — the children ARE our future. You do the math…if you’re able.
[Note: This article was written by Derrick Wilburn]