Tonawanda News

Opinion

November 3, 2013

Stop stereotypes about minority kids

Tonawanda News — Meditate on this routinely ignored fact: Not all minority children are disadvantaged or at risk. 

Despite all the terrible statistics you hear and read about the seemingly insurmountable obstacles minority and immigrant children must overcome, these kids are not hopeless.

They deserve better than to be assumed a lost cause to poverty, discrimination and other limitations. Now there’s research to prove it.

According to a study conducted by the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD), substantive indicators of success are regularly overlooked in research and discussions about minority kids and their life prospects.

In SRCD’s recently published social policy report, “Positive Development of Minority Children,” lead author Natasha J. Cabrera and the society’s Ethnic and Racial Issues Committee note:

“Although the development and well-being of ethnic and racial minority children have received sustained attention over the past few decades from policymakers, researchers, and practitioners, these efforts have contributed to a body of knowledge that, while rigorous and insightful, has often been deficit-oriented, emphasizing the negative effects of inadequate economic and social resources and an elevated rate of behavior problems, decreased social competence, and lower rates of school success among these children.

“A primary focus on adversity has had the unintended consequence of eclipsing the strengths or assets that minority families possess to raise healthy children.”

As I’ve written before, these ubiquitous pessimistic narratives of minority children create what Pedro Noguera, author of “The Trouble With Black Boys ... and Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education,” describes as “Pobrecito Syndrome.” This is when well-meaning people lower their expectations as a form of sympathy for students who are poor, minority or don’t have native English speakers at home.

Yet despite many real life challenges, minority students have unique repositories of strengths that are rarely taken into account in discussions of natural aptitudes, academic assets or adaptability.

Text Only
Opinion
  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On lines blurred, crossed and nonexistent It strikes me more and more how blurry the lines have gotten in all facets of our world, large and small.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Tucker, Barbara.jpg TUCKER: Oh, the joys of Sound Off Never thought the words "Thank goodness for Sound Off" would ever be printed here.

    July 26, 2014 1 Photo

  • adamczyk, ed.jpg ADAMCZYK: And now for something completely different... Last weekend I attended a local movie theater (a plushy, posh experience; they design these places now to get you out of your living room and away from your home electronics) to watch the sun set on the British Empire.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • OUR VIEW: Arson suspect never deserved bail Two of the 11 fires reported on Fifth Avenue could have been prevented with some jurisprudence in evaluating whether the suspect, Michelle Johnston, deserved to be offered bail. Given the obvious nature of a repeat offender who was charged with nine felony arson counts, bail never should have been offered in this case.

    July 25, 2014

  • wallace, amy.jpg WALLACE: Too much information? Is there such a thing as TMI or too much information anymore? Some might say yes.

    July 24, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: On reading and the lack thereof It was surprising to me a few weeks ago when a friend asked a group of us to estimate how many books we have each read over the last five years. The English teacher said 200 and he far and away led the pack. I was probably the median and my number was 20-25.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • confer, bob.jpg CONFER: A Con-Con would be a con game

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • duvall, eric.jpg DUVALL: Conflict in Ukraine now a concern of global proportions It seems increasingly clear Ukrainian separatists, with the help from the Russian military, are responsible for the tragedy. They, of course, have denied it. They've also denied access to the crash site to international investigators seeking to recover the dead and determine what happened. That's not something the innocent party does.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • ADAMCZYK: Personal development, rendered in steel Accepting the premise that everyone needs to fill the same amount of time every day (24 hours, every day), some people use theirs rebuilding things, tangible things, and thus fulfill a few intangible goals.

    July 18, 2014

  • WALLACE: Festival season is underway Summer is the season of fairs and festivals. From Canal Fest in the Tonawandas to the Allentown Art Festival and Italian Heritage Festival in Buffalo to the Erie County Fair in Hamburg, the Western New York area has no shortage of things to do with the family over the summer.

    July 17, 2014

Featured Ads
Seasonal Content
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Facebook
Front page
NDN Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue