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Education Relating to Minority Students sample essay

Should an educator remain indifferent to the institutional bias that exists in our educational system? Should an educator address the academic needs of every student who comes under his or her care and make sure that equal opportunities for learning is given to all students irrespective of their status in society? Clause 6B-1.

006, in the Code of Ethics prescribed by the Principles of Professional Conduct for the Education Profession in Florida, states that an educator “shall not harass or discriminate against any student on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, age, national or ethnic origin, political beliefs, marital status, handicapping condition, sexual orientation, or social and family background and shall make reasonable effort to assure that each student is protected from harassment or discrimination. ” But, is this being implemented and to what extent?

During my years as an educator I have been deeply concerned with the issue of inadequately educating our minority students. This is a sensitive issue that has often been discussed, but not adequately addressed. Our education agencies, government, and parents have to understand that various remedies should be implemented to secure the future of minority students. 2. T-Think Through the Options Here are some actions that instructors can take to resolve ethical issues educational institutions. 1.

The instructor could first give importance to the ethical issue of freedom of thought and expression to minority students. They should not have any biased opinion about such students and they should offer equal opportunities to all students. 2. The instructor can ensure that poverty doesn’t come in the way of students quitting education mid-way. Instructors are the ones who are constantly in touch with the students and they should be able to discern if a child were to quit studies because of lack of funds. They can guide such students appropriately.

3. The instructor should be sensitive to the issues related to minority children. Learning disabilities, if any, should be identified and resources to address such problems should be made sufficiently available to schools. They should equip themselves to cater to the diverse needs of diverse student populations. 4. The instructor should understand that the reason for low academic performance in minority students cannot merely be attributed to their families. The school, classroom, and instructional factors play a major role.

They can act as coordinators and initiate programs that include the participation of community members and cultural organizations to bridge the gap that might exist between families and schools. 5. The instructor could involve the family members of the students in the overall development of the students. 3. H-Highlight the Stakeholders 1. Government: Both the federal and the state governments should take steps to strictly impose the bias test and No Child Left Behind Act. It can conduct awareness programs to educate people on stereotypes associated with minority students. 2.

Educators: They must do a good job of teaching minority students about their own heritage through student-centered teaching models that encourage them to have pride in what and who they are. 3. Parents: They often face the brunt of struggling students. They can get involved in the decision-making process and in their own way can serve to inspire and encourage students. 4. Students: They are people affected by the decisions and actions of all the above. There is a possibility of students becoming dropouts. They need to make optimum use of resources available to them in pursuing their education.

4. I-Identify and Apply Relevant Ethical Principles As an educator, it often upsets me when I see children being moved up and released from high school with second and third grade reading skills. The red tape to get help is so long that some frustrated parents are forced to look outside the school system for help. Others are at a loss as to how to help children whom they know “can do it” if only they could get some help. As educators it is our moral duty to give them the opportunity no matter what race, gender, or ethnicity they belong to.

We are responsible for making sure that students have strong educational programs and required resources. Lack of resources and poor teacher preparation largely account for the inadequate achievement of minority students. Clause 6B-1. 001 of Code of Ethics of the Education Profession in Florida states that “the educator’s primary professional concern will always be for the student and for the development of the student’s potential. The educator will therefore strive for professional growth and will seek to exercise the best professional judgment and integrity. ”

Immanuel Kant’s Theory echoes a similar view: “Do the right thing” (160). His theory emphasizes that ethical issues are based on the standards of rationality and that “ethics should begin with analysis, and that analysis is or should be an entirely a priori undertaking. ” This theory will more so apply to educators since they deal with young and naive minds. They must be rational in their approach to students and they must not underestimate the intelligence of “minority” students. They must understand that there are certain basic skills every child must have if they are to achieve success in life.

Clause 6B-1. 001 of Code of Ethics of the Education Profession in Florida states that “The educator values the worth and dignity of every person, the pursuit of truth, devotion to excellence, acquisition of knowledge, and the nurture of democratic citizenship. Essential to the achievement of these standards are the freedom to learn and to teach and the guarantee of equal opportunity for all. ” Herbert Kohl argues that the objective of every classroom instructor and every school board in this nation should be to create a classroom environment that fosters a mutual respect from both student and the teacher.

Kohl states that “looking at a child and understanding something of who she or he is or might become, is not a simple neutral act or a matter of finding the right objective test of experimental situation. Central to what you see in someone is what you are looking for. If you want to find a child’s weaknesses, failures, personal problems, or inadequacies, you’ll discover them. If you look at a child through the filter of his or her environment or economic status, and make judgments through the filter of your own culture, gender and racial biases, you’ll find the characteristics that you except.

You’ll also find yourself well placed to reproduce failure, and develop resistance in some children, a false sense of superiority in others. On the other hand, if you look for strengths and filter the world through the prism of hope, you will see and encourage, the unexpected flowering of child life in the most unlikely places. (p. 89) As a citizen of this country I have come to understand that justice is something that many worry about. Be it for the reason of never having your side of the case judged or never having your side heard. Justice in education can only come when there is justice in the country.

When Ronald Regan was running for President he made a statement: “Vote for me and I will turn the clock back forty years. ” In a sense, this is what we need to do with our educational system. There was a time when students could learn drafting, auto mechanics, home economics, aeronautics, plumbing, painting, etc. This no longer exists today because someone in authority decided that it would be more beneficial for those in power if they abolished these programs from regular schools, have them in specialty schools, and charge for those services. More time is now spent on standardized tests.

Florida has the FCAT test. Teachers understand that the students’ careers depend on a pass or fail result in the test; so, they are forced to teach to the test. This leads to the rule-utilitarian theory, which is the theory of morality. This theory does not look at the consequences of a particular act. Instead, it looks at the value of abiding by a particular rule to establish what is right. I believe that all minority students are not college material. However, they possess other special skills that need to be nurtured and we as educators need to support those talents and watch them grow.

As per the rule-utilitarian theory educators can decide upon the best method of educational practice and defend it on utilitarian grounds. This theory propagates that educators can give complete recognition to individual rights and freedom of students since that takes precedence over utility. For example, the every student has an equal right to a particular facility in the school. To deprive a student of this facility based on his or her “minority” status will be unlawful. 5. CS –Choose the Wisest Option and State Your Justification Where do we begin to combat the issues toward minority students?

One way to go forward will be to craft standardized tests that are as free as possible from cultural biases and from language that might be construed, because of its idiomatic feature and nuances, as favoring some students who have grown up familiar with those idioms over students who have not. Next is an equitable education system. Sometimes I am convinced that this country is not really interested in integration. I say this because I think our country wants to make sure that we will always have a segment of the population that is operating as second-class citizens.

Anytime we have schools that are failing, underfunded, and populated by students of color, whether they are Hispanic or African-American, we know good and well that as adults, they’re not going to be amply equipped to accomplish and achieve the way others do, and they will remain in that second-class loop. It’s been a continuous process and we are led to wonder if it’s not somewhat purposeful. Third is racial stereotyping. Issues regarding race and ethnicity negatively affect “minority” student achievement. Just because a student’s name is Myeshia or Tyrone doesn’t mean they have no fluency in language.

The last issue is money and culturally-sensitive teaching. The U. S. Department of Education has initiated teachers’ training programs to solve some of these issues. The Teacher Quality Enhancement Grants initiative consists of three separate programs: Partnership Grants for Improving Teacher Preparation, State Grants, and Teacher Recruitment Grants. Partnership Grants for Improving Teacher Preparation will provide funds to partnerships among teacher preparation institutions, schools of arts and sciences, and local school districts in high-need areas.

The partners will work to strengthen teacher education through activities such as: implementing reforms that hold teacher education programs accountable, improving prospective teachers’ knowledge of academic content, ensuring that teachers are well-prepared for the realities of the classroom, and preparing prospective teachers to use technology and work effectively with diverse students. 6. Identifying Logical Fallacies A. Fallacy of Ignorance: Racial issues will not exist if the VP of AT&T is an African-American and the Secretary of State is Hispanic. B.

Fallacy of Inconsistency If no child should be left behind, then why is the government closing schools to African-Americans, Hispanics, and Native Americans? C. Fallacy of Hasty Generalization Lucy lives to the south of Chicago and does not pass the language test; Mike is from the Bronx and fails in the math test; therefore, people from low income areas cannot pass tests. On researching this topic in detail, the issues of the past still seem to haunt our current efforts to create a more equitable education and living system for all within the United States.

The physical, mental, social, and economic hindrances encountered by minorities in the past are still being encountered on a higher level today. There is still the lack of understanding of minority student culture and poor teacher preparation in predominantly minority school districts. Herbert Kohn offers insight into overcoming the cultural barriers in our classrooms. The main solution he offers is that of educators becoming better trained to work with minority students, their families, and their communities. The U. S.

Department of Education has begun to combat this problem with Title I and by instilling highly qualified teachers in our classrooms. However, until all students are on a level playing field, we will have a separate and unequal system that can only be overcome by seeing education as a human right, which only the Constitution of the United States can guarantee.


1. Florida Department of Education, Office of Professional Practices, http://www. fldoe. org/edstandards/code_of_ethics. asp. 2. Kohn, Herbert R, I Won’t Learn from You: And Other Thought on Creative Maladjustment, 1994. 3. U. S. Department of Education, www. ed. gov.

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