A Message From The Publisher
By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
Last week I penned an opinion about the “Great Replacement” theory that appears to be woven into the fabric of decision making in the Broward County School System combined with a covert white washing of Black administrators from out of Black schools.
I want to set the record straight! I have NO qualms about my beliefs that there are Black people in the school system that are more that qualified to create and run a system that produces students that have the potential to be equal and far above what they are. My support and advocacy for Black representation at the school and district level is about our Black and Brown students and that there is ample research that supports having “competent” Black administrators benefits all students, not just Black students as well as bringing equity to an unequal system.
On Saturday, Superintendent Vicky Cartwright told a room of pastors and community advocates from the north Broward corridor that she will not hire anyone just because they are Black.
Superintendent Cartwright told a room full of pastors and community advocates that she will not hire anyone just because they are Black.
Again, let’s set the record straight. My advocacy has always been clear. I plead the case for competent, WOKE and Conscious Black administrators at the Executive level who are not gun shy, fearful of telling and teaching the truth and CRT be damned! And they must be the best at representing the needs of Black, Brown and impoverished students.
And while I agree that Superintendent Cartwright should not hire a Black person because he/she is Black in color and do not understand the culture, I would caution her not to hire a White person because she is White. But I plan to address that next week.
There is plenty of research that proves that hiring Black administrators and teachers works favorably not only for Black, Brown and poverty students, but having inclusion with Black representation benefits all students.
A 2019 study by Vanderbilt University, an affluent predominately White university, found that having a skilled Black principal generally leads to higher student achievement for all students, while Black women principals specifically foster higher collective responsibility among teachers.
An additional study by the University of Minnesota, another affluent predominately White university, found similar results but noted the difficulties skilled Black administrators, specifically Black women, face as they navigate the political landscapes in the workplace and that these challenges need addressing.
With the School Board Of Broward County, the inclusion of representation with diversity in general is cool; however, qualified Black representation in key administrative positions throughout the system would actually create a winning situation for all.
I conclude (like I am now a researcher) that if Black principals and teachers have the greatest impact on students in schools, an even greater impact can be made by having competent Blacks at the Executive level making decisions to provide resources and kicking down the doors to the rooms that allow conversations and deals to be made that develop barriers to the education of all students without “deliberate speed”.
It’s a sad commentary that causes me to ‘bump my head’ and ask, “are you serious”, when I hear White people make comments about Blacks being hired just because they are Black or just because they know someone.
What is good for the goose is good for the gander.
But I will follow up next week on what I believe to be some hiring privileges and practices of Whites. Might there be a person or two in SBBC who are not qualified or the most qualified for Executive level jobs, but were hired because they are White?
The Westside Gazette is watching.