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April 16th, 2014
thesmithian

'If you’re a Chinese American child of Chinese American immigrants, then it’s quite likely you spent part of your childhood attending Chinese school. It’s a coming of age ritual of growing up ½ or 1st generation Chinese American. And of course we all hated it when we were going to Chinese school, complained to our parents about it, and if our parents caved we eventually got out of it. It’s also true that once you’re an adult, you realize your parents were right all along, and almost all of us wish we had stuck with it, and learned more in that dreaded Chinese school.'

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April 10th, 2014
thesmithian

There are border crossings and hyphenations. Dominican, but not. Haitian, but not. Black Latino. Father. Poet. One of the fiercest writers…One of the most tender. Back-and-forth between Spanish and English. Rakim name-dropped alongside Ravitch. Some references cited and explained—Paolo Freire, for example – but the hip hop lyrics aren’t; it’s up to the reader to decode, not to Vilson to translate. That flips the rules of power and culture and literacy…

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There are border crossings and hyphenations. Dominican, but not. Haitian, but not. Black Latino. Father. Poet. One of the fiercest writers…One of the most tender. Back-and-forth between Spanish and English. Rakim name-dropped alongside Ravitch. Some references cited and explained—Paolo Freire, for example – but the hip hop lyrics aren’t; it’s up to the reader to decode, not to Vilson to translate. That flips the rules of power and culture and literacy…

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April 3rd, 2014
thesmithian
…while black women in the US are making strides in education and business and affecting political trends with stellar voter turnout numbers, they remain more vulnerable to health problems and violence than any other group. Their strength at the polls is not reflected in elected positions.
March 26th, 2014
thesmithian

what of the…women who…came to Paris…to attend classes at the Sorbonne, but who really were in search of a degree in the School of Life? It seems there is a small but growing literature on the subject.

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March 26th, 2014
thesmithian

'We've persuaded ourselves that residential isolation of low-income black children is only de facto—the accident of economic circumstance, personal preference, and private discrimination. Unless we relearn how residential segregation is de jure—racially motivated public policy—we can't remedy school segregation that flows from neighborhood isolation.'

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March 26th, 2014
thesmithian

There are now more people working as private security guards than high school teachers.

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March 21st, 2014
thesmithian
It certainly makes a difference in how you do and how you feel when you are in a community with high quality amenities…You’re less stressed and often you’re more engaged.

Amado Padilla

a professor at Stanford’s Graduate School of Education

March 20th, 2014
thesmithian

'In Spain 57% of the population below 30 is unable to find a job…The worrying list also includes Greece with 58% and Croatia, the Union’s newest member state, with 52%.'

Being young, motivated, and well-educated no longer means being on the path for financial independence today. Especially not in Spain, where many ambitious graduates are refused employment on the grounds of being overqualified. The lucky ones might find an unpaid internship or an underpaid, temporary job that scarcely matches their qualifications.

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March 18th, 2014
thesmithian

'…the ability to ask insightful questions will be even more critical tomorrow than it is today. As change continues to accelerate, tomorrow’s leaders—and the larger workforce—will have to keep learning, updating and adapting what they know, inventing and re-inventing their own jobs and careers through constant, ongoing inquiry…'

Given all of this, it’s worth asking: Are our schools doing a good job of preparing students for a world where questioning is a survival skill?

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March 18th, 2014
thesmithian
…Deserve it, then. Study, do your work. Be honest, frank and fearless and get some grasp of the real values of life. You will meet, of course, curious little annoyances. People will wonder at your dear brown and the sweet crinkley hair. But that simply is of no importance and will soon be forgotten. Remember that most folk laugh at anything unusual, whether it is beautiful, fine or not. You, however, must not laugh at yourself. You must know that brown is as pretty as white or prettier…The main thing is the YOU beneath the clothes and skin—the ability to do, the will to conquer, the determination to understand and know this great, wonderful, curious world. Don’t shrink from new experiences and custom. Take the cold bath bravely…Enjoy what is, and not pine for what is not. Read some good, heavy, serious books just for discipline: Take yourself in hand and master yourself. Make yourself do unpleasant things, so as to gain the upper hand of your soul.

W.E.B. Du Bois

In 1914, his soon-to-be 14-year-old daughter, Yolande, left the family home to study at Bedales School in England. He wrote her the [above, excerpted] letter of advice soon after her arrival…

March 12th, 2014
thesmithian

Though Pres. Obama has been able to provide this kind of life for his daughters, he seems oblivious to all the ways in which Malia and Sasha’s educational and economic trajectory, even prior to coming to the White House, looks in no way similar to that of the masses of African-American girls.

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March 9th, 2014
thesmithian
It was my time to enter the arranged marriage hunt. Now that I was 19, and soon turning 20, I needed to get hitched or at least engaged before my pickings dwindled to creepy, bald, old men. I was fine with an arranged marriage. I had seen hundreds of successful ones and being the good Muslim girl my parents raised me to be, there was no other way. I had my own list of demands, though. I wanted someone educated and between three and five years older than me. I didn’t want more than two children and would not get married until I received my JD. He would be solely in charge of supporting me and the family, as I only wanted to do pro-bono human rights work. In return, I would raise his kids, be a good wife, and never soil his name. I didn’t care what he looked like, but he had to be a practicing Muslim who valued his faith. Let the search begin.
March 6th, 2014
thesmithian

“the overrepresentation of people of color in private prisons indicates they are disproportionately siphoned away from public prisons—precisely the types of facilities that provide the greatest access to educational and rehabilitative programs and services…People of color continue to be seen in the national imagination as sources of profit extraction and not necessarily as citizens deserving of public services.”

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