Brown: Creating opportunities for students, not fear in teachers – Indianapolis Recorder – DC Initiative on Racial Equity
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I began my career as a ninth grade English teacher on the south side of St. Louis. I was a young white teacher right out of college, and over 90% of my students were Black. One thing became clear to me very quickly: My students were brilliant and had endless potential, but our education system and society at large were not designed to provide them with the opportunities they deserved.

My time in the classroom taught me that potential is evenly distributed, but opportunity is not. Here in Indiana, white students are over four times more likely to pass state math and English assessments than their Black peers. This is just one example of countless measures that show persistent — and sometimes growing — racial disparities within our education system. There must be something systematically wrong with a system that


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