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Pasadena Education Report Card:

African Americans Losing Ground in all Categories

Belinda Brown, candidate for Pasadena City CollegeAs we approach the 2010/ 2011 school year, a snapshot of the status of Black influence in the educational picture is bleak. For the first time in years there will be fewer African Americans at the PUSD Administrative level than in nearly twenty years. There will be no African Americans at the Assistant Superintendent's level at the Pasadena Unified School District. There will be a reduction in the number of African American School principals than in past years. And there is only one African American on the School Board. At Pasadena City College, African American enrollment has dropped to less than six percent and may be closer to only five percent when the doors open in the fall. Unfortunately, this drop corresponds to the replacement of the first African American on the PCC Board of Trustees with a Latina, Connie Reyes Castro, on the Board. The corresponding numbers reflect an increase in Latino students and a drop in African American students. Many are asking the question, "Is this a coincidence or what?"

A recent announcement was made by Berlinda Brown, a bilingual Afro Costa Rican who has lived in Pasadena for over 30 years, that she will be running for the PCC District 3 Seat in the November 3rd Election.

Pasadena Education Foundation (PEF) has no Black staff. They are a private non profit organization dedicated to the betterment of the educational process for students in the PUSD. Most of the PUSD Board members are on the PEF board and the result is the maintenance of the status quo with African American students on the losing end.

The elephant in the room that no one dares publicly to talk about is that when there is an increase in Latinos in the decision making process Blacks seem to lose out. On the contrary, the much talked about coalition building between Blacks and Latinos always seems to result in an increase in Latino representation and a reduction in African American representation.

The real question is what can be done about it ? Maybe another coalition meeting?


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