I learned about Carter G. Woodson School in Chicago on Thursday, and was absolutely heartbroken. The information I am about to share is strictly third party as I had never heard of the school before yesterday. However, the concept behind the school is very funky if what I was told is true.
Carter G. Woodson has two schools in one building. One school is run by Chicago Public Schools, the other school is a charter school run by the University of Chicago. From what I was told, there is a wall that separates the two schools. Not only does the wall separate each group physically; it separates them intellectually and socially.
According to what I was told, the children are not allowed to interact with each other; therefore, they have different break and dismissal times. That’s the physical disconnection. Intellectually, the charter school children are being prepared for college and ultimately corporate America. Looking at CPS’ track record, the kids on the other side of the school is looking at a good 5 years…in prison. Lastly, these two programs are examples of the division of race and class in America. How? You have young Black children with similar backgrounds with the same opportunities (ideally), but physical, intellectual, and social restrictions are placed on some while other are encouraged to grow.
Like I said, I had not heard about the school before yesterday, but I can say that there is irony in the school. Carter G. Woodson was an African American scholar, educator and historian. He was brilliant. Also, he wrote The Mis-Education of the Negro. Do you see the irony of the school named after Mr. Woodson who was a scholar that believed in education and felt that Negroes were being mis-educated? One side of the educational institution is educating students while the other is mis-educating. Nice!
I am going to try to visit the school in the near future to take a look for myself. In the meantime, you read my thoughts about Carter G. Woodson School in Chicago on As NOT Seen on TV.
Note: The photo was taken from cps.edu website.