1. says:

    June 6, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    I went to tweet this out but our buttons aren’t working. Boo.

    But I loved this. We have the same lack of diversity in public versus private schools here, and although our specific issues aren’t the same, we wanted diversity and it’s hard to find that outside the city public schools, which, beyond elementary school, do not have the best education reputation.

    • Martha says:

      June 7, 2011 at 4:29 pm

      Dang it. Just one more thing I’ve gotta do this week! It seems like most private schools are lacking in diversity no matter where they are in the country.

  2. tymetravelife says:

    June 6, 2011 at 10:53 pm

    From preschool to college to the workplace, blacks in this country are submersed in “white-identified” environments pretty much daily. The only break they get is the time spent with their families. Because black parents–like any other race parents–want long term success for their children, they must make a choice between the “best” education & the desire for unconditional racial acceptance for their child.

    The best & sometimes heartbreaking choice for parents of black children, is the “best” education no matter the racial make-up.

    Note: I reference blacks here because your child is biracially black/white & not to insult anyone not monoracially black.

    • Martha says:

      June 7, 2011 at 4:31 pm

      Yes! And why is this even though the ratios of black to white are growing? I’d guess it’s partially due to the lack of good education for the children of other-than-white descent.

  3. tymetravelife says:

    June 7, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    “I’d guess it’s partially due to the lack of good education for the children of other-than-white descent.”

    Yes. And this isn’t even really a problem, since many black parents can afford to move to a neighborhood w/better schools or pay the tuition at a private school.

    The more immediate issue (and something that’s very easy to change) is that white parents of white children find it difficult to speak about race. Or maybe because their children are white & usually surrounded by people like them, white parents have no reason to see talking about race with their kids as urgent. With parents of minority kids, the closer their child gets to school age, the more anxious the parents become to prepare their child for the lack of racial awareness they may encounter–both among their peers & educators. There’s a fear of leaving their child vulnerable & w/o their immediate parental protection.

    • Martha says:

      June 8, 2011 at 7:34 am

      In a nutshell, yes!

      One of the cool things that I’ve encountered with my white friends, who are parenting white children, is that they are hearing from me (and some of our other biracial friends) the importance of talking about race with their kids. The feedback I’ve gotten from them is that they really feel at a loss as to “how” to talk to their kids about race. It’s been so taboo for so many years. And now, we’re saying “talk about it!” But we aren’t saying how. It’s a much more different approach when you aren’t coming from the perspective of having a child with darker skin, or a different cultural background.

      But you’re definitely right, there is a lack of urgency for them as well since they aren’t encountering much diversity.

  4. tymetravelife says:

    June 9, 2011 at 12:06 am

    That’s very hopeful.

    LOL, I feel I’m being stalkerish by continuing to comment, but skin diversity education is kind of a major subject for minority parents (i.e., beauty comes in many colors, your color is beautiful, character is most important, not color; white/brown/taupe/peach skin does not=evil). Although, it would be great if more minority parents could be more accepting of cultural diversity.

    The how is as painless as reading from childrens books with skin diverse characters & casually pointing out differences with a happy facial expression. That’s a start, I think.

    • says:

      June 9, 2011 at 7:33 am

      Not stalkerish at all! I am loving this conversation. I think that there is a segment of white parents who is starting to do things like that. Austin, I think, is not very representative of the rest of the country. It’s a pretty liberal town, most people are open to accepting non-traditional ideas. So, take it for what it’s worth. But I’ve seen lots of white parents with kids who have baby dolls with dark skin, and books at home with lots of diversity.

      I agree that it’s a nice start. I’ve suggested to a couple of my friends that they make more effort to bring more people into their homes who have varying ethnicity. I think IRL exposure is what’s necessary. I grew up with liberal parents, but it wasn’t until I moved to Japan, and then Detroit, that I really started to drop a lot of my stereotypical views. I even had lots of friends of different colors as a child/teen/young adult, but living in areas with majorities of people who were different from me was what it took for me to really open my eyes.

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