In an era where educators typically have their hands tied and must pass students who are vastly unqualified to move on through the education system because of pressure from parents, the federal government, or allegations of racism, we have this unique case in which New York state teachers unable to score high enough on a licensing test will be able to get those exam requirements watered down because … you guessed it, the questions had to be racist.
Via Liberty Unyielding:
A federal judge in New York has struck down a test used by New York City to vet potential teachers, finding the test of knowledge illegally discriminated against racial minorities due to their lower scores.
At first glance, the city’s second Liberal Arts and Science Test (LAST-2) seems fairly innocuous. Unlike the unfair literacy tests of Jim Crow, LAST-2 (which was discontinued in 2012) was given to every teaching candidate in New York, and was simply a means to ensuring that ever teacher has a basic high school-level understanding of both the liberal arts and the sciences.
One sample question from the test asked prospective educators to identify the mathematical principle of a linear relationship when given four examples. Another asked them to read four passages from the Constitution and identify which illustrates the notion of checks and balances. In addition to factual recall, the test also checked basic academic skills, such as reading comprehension and the ability to read basic charts and graphs.
Nevertheless, this apparently neutral subject matter contained an insidious kernel of racism, because Hispanic and black applicants had a rate of passing that was respectively 54% and 75% the success rate of white candidates.
Kevin Jackson, talk radio host and author, claims “If the teachers can’t learn themselves, then we just change the rules and we cry racism.”
Same with the students, Jackson explained, “If they can’t teach the students, then they’ll change the grades. And if they do that and somebody cries foul, then they’ll cry racism.”
He added, “The system isn’t accountable to anybody.”
“The teachers aren’t teaching. The kids aren’t learning. They’re just doing what they need to do to pass them through. And America is getting what it deserves quite frankly.”