Teaching Black children

RESPECTING CHILDREN & YOUNG PEOPLE

Uvanney Maylor
post by UVANNEY MAYLOR
Director of the Institute for Research in Education, University of Bedfordshire

Below I discuss two concerns which have preoccupied me for a while now.

Since the 1960s’s in schools and educational policy discourse much has been made about the lower attainment of Black children (but specifically Black Caribbean) and the perceived lack of parental valuing of education, and supporting their children’s educational attainment. So it was no surprise to hear a teacher at a conference (aimed at encouraging Black children to consider careers requiring higher education study) in 2009 point to Black educational failure being cultural and innate, and questioning whether ‘Black people’s culture predisposed them to underachievement’. Some might consider this a statement of fact given the persistent lower attainment of Black Caribbean students vis-à-vis White British students. While the comment by the teacher incensed me, it did not affect me as much as…

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