School & Dropouts
Black boys are, for a variety of reasons, significantly underperforming their peers in scholastic achievement. In Oakland, California, high school statistics indicate that 73% of African American males do not finish high school; over 50% of the entire student body! Closer studies reveal that in inner cities across the country, more than 50% of all black men do not finish high school.
It is well documented that one result of “Zero Tolerance” policies in schools throughout the nation is that male youth of color are disproportionately suspended and expelled. It is also exhaustively documented that students that are suspended or expelled from school are more likely to drop out of school, decline academically, and ultimately become entrenched in the penal system as juveniles. Research in schools consistently indicates that boys of color are more likely to be punished and are more likely to drop out of high school.
Science & Mathematics
Amid mediocre US scores on international science tests and predictions of future shortages of scientists and engineers, policy makers have begun requiring more science in schools. By 2011, 27 states will require high school students to take at least three science courses to graduate. In 1992, only six had such requirements.
In 2005, only about 2 percent of Hispanic and African American high school students scored at proficient or advanced levels on the California State Physics Tests. The problems with high school science education are rooted, in part, in the federal “No Child Left Behind” law, which mandates that students be tested in mathematics and reading skills and expected to reach a particular proficiency level. As a result some elementary and middle schools, particularly in high-poverty areas, have been teaching less science. This is especially true for school districts like West Contra Costa in California, which has, in essence, removed science from the entire middle school curriculum.
In order to prevent black boys from losing further ground, drastic measures and investments are required. M³ works to ensure that boys with a dream can realize these through academic performance. Work with us to help our boys.