Dear Editor: It's astonishing that school board members are so bereft of critical thinking skills that the only conclusion they can come to regarding racial disparities in advanced courses is that there is deliberate segregation taking place. Did they even entertain any other possibilities? Student interests? Parental involvement? Peer pressure? Prior preparation? Interest in further, post-secondary education? Etc.

The board's enthusiasm for embracing racism as a precipitator for all challenges in the Madison schools is not only tired, it's extremely dangerous as it encourages divisiveness and resentment that may not be warranted. Instead of engaging in personal axe grinding it might be a good idea to cast a wider net for possible explanations which would suggest routes to more desired outcomes. You could start by talking to the teachers who deliver these programs but you would have to hire an outside firm that would guarantee absolute anonymity in order to elicit honest responses. This school board would almost certainly punish any teacher who did not agree with their pre-ordained conclusions.

Chris Gargan


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