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Utopia Talk / Politics / no right to access to literacy
swordtail
Anarchist Prime
Tue Jul 03 20:31:52
U.S. Court: Detroit students have no right to access to literacy

Posted By Michael Jackman on Mon, Jul 2, 2018 at 11:03 AM

On Friday, dumped out with the least desirable news of the week came word that a lawsuit arguing that Detroit students were being denied an education had been dismissed.



Perhaps you remember the case. MT presented a cover story about it last year. With the help of a public interest law firm, a handful of Detroit students charged in federal court that educational officials in Michigan — including Gov. Rick Snyder — denied them access to an education of any quality.

The lawsuit took pains to illustrate how Detroit's schools — run under a state-appointed emergency manager — were a welter of dysfunction: overcrowded classrooms, lack of textbooks and basic materials, unqualified staff, leaking roofs, broken windows, black mold, contaminated drinking water, rodents, no pens, no paper, no toilet paper, and unsafe temperatures that had classes canceled due to 90-degree heat or classrooms so cold students could see their breath.





At times, without teachers or instructional materials, students were simply herded into rooms and asked to watch videos. One student claimed to have learned all the words to the film Frozen in high school. The lawsuit even mentions one eighth grade student who "taught" a seventh and eighth grade math class for a month because no teacher could be found.

We had described such teaching methods as a sort of "throw a book at them and hope they learn something" method of education — only without the book to throw. Student cannot be expected to learn when they are simply "warehoused for seven hours a day" in "an unsafe, degrading, and chaotic environment" that is a school "in name only." It is hardly surprising that, at the plaintiff's schools, which serve almost exclusively low-income children of color, almost 99 percent of the students are unable to achieve proficiency in state-mandated subjects.

Last year, the state moved for dismissal, arguing that the 14th Amendment contains no reference to literacy.

Then, last week, U.S. District Judge Stephen Murphy III agreed with the state.

Literacy is important, the judge noted. But students enjoy no right to access to being taught literacy. All the state has to do is make sure schools run. If they are unable to educate their students, that's a shame, but court rulings have not established that "access to literacy" is "a fundamental right."

At the close of last year's story, one of the plaintiffs in the case, Jamarria Hall, had reflected on his experiences at Detroit's Osborn High School and described the institution as a "crab barrel" — where you can't escape because you keep getting pulled, or pushed, back in.

He had said the state was one of those forces pushing any crabs who'd escape back in. "'Cause, starting out, they're the ones at the top of the barrel."

Apparently, we may add the U.S. government to those pushing crabs back in their barrel.

http://www...no-right-to-access-to-literacy
OsamaIsDaWorstPresid
Member
Tue Jul 03 20:41:18
"overcrowded classrooms, lack of textbooks and basic materials, unqualified staff, leaking roofs, broken windows, black mold, contaminated drinking water, rodents, no pens, no paper, no toilet paper, and unsafe temperatures"

letz b honist hear we culd haev einstein himsalf teechin tham physicz and it wuldint maek a diference so i dunt c wut da problim iz shuldint waste resorcis on a lost cause
Nekran
Member
Wed Jul 04 00:51:12
"Literacy is important, the judge noted. But students enjoy no right to access to being taught literacy. All the state has to do is make sure schools run."

Wow.
McKobb
Member
Wed Jul 04 00:55:05
Detroit.
Turtle Crawler
Admin
Thu Jul 05 01:09:36
Just reject all the students with IQ < 90, will fix the problem.
murder
Member
Thu Jul 05 01:15:49

This is America.
hood
Member
Thu Jul 05 09:27:28
One could argue that if these schools are not providing certain mandatory classes (gym, health including sex education), then the schools would absolutely be subject to lawsuit.
Sam Adams
Member
Thu Jul 05 11:13:50
Just nuke detroit and start over.
Pillz
Member
Thu Jul 05 11:19:19
First Western metropolis to lose status as developed.
Average Ameriacn
Member
Thu Jul 05 11:27:57
I would offer a few bibles that they could use as text books.
Rugian
Member
Thu Jul 05 13:20:44
Article heading is somewhat hyperbolic. "Court: The United States Constitution contains no language that compels the States to guarantee access to public literacy programs" would be more accurate.

Seems like a good ruling to me. Detroit students are getting royally fucked but the lawsuit here went about the wrong way of correcting that.
Rugian
Member
Thu Jul 05 13:31:02
The court opinion also states that the lack of access could be unconstitutional on Equal Protection grounds, but that the Plaintiffs didn't really make that argument beyond a generic "they h8 us cuz we niggas" statement.

There's likely going to come a time when the state's mismanagement of Detroit's education system will be ruled unconstitutional for reasons of racial discrimination. When that happens I just hope someone more competent (re: white) writes that lawsuit.
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