Public Policy

Education Watch

Our intent is to monitor developments in education and evaluate them in terms of their impact on African American children.  Often the bar is raised in terms of ever escalating standards of performance that are required of children.  There is a trend toward moving academic content down to lower grade levels which works for affluent children who attend high quality preschool programs.  However, these initiatives are rarely evaluated in terms of the impact they will have on African American children.  Rhoden (2006) in $40 million dollar slaves, makes the point that in years gone by the fortunes of African American athletes were circumscribed by violence and intimidation.  Today their fortunes are circumscribed by rules and regulations.  So, raising the bar on ACT and SAT tests serves the same function as “gentleman agreements” in previous generations.  Likewise, when innovations such as “constructed responses” on standardized tests are implemented, the result is lower achievement by African American test takers who are not as proficient as white children in writing. Also included are Legal Action and Legislative Watch.

Public Policy Lecture Series: African American Children Cannot Wait

This event will be held at Wayne State University as a biannual event. The first Lecture Series will be held on May 8, 2010. It will be free and open to the public. The attendees will be engaged in Advocacy Groups in which they will design ongoing plans to influence public policy related to African American children in school. Foundations will be contacted for funding of this lecture series.

The goals of the Public Policy Lecture Series are to:

  1. Provide organized advocacy for African American children
  2. Promote discussion of policy issues among academics and policymakers/advocates affecting African American children
  3. Promote development of policies and practices that will enhance optimal achievement of African American children in school.

These discussions will yield Think Tank recommendations regarding collaborative linkages, applications for program development, contributions to the research agenda, and implications for public policy. Discussions will be recorded, transcribed, videotaped and posted on the ISAAC website.

Public Policy Lecture Series Program - 2010

2012 Think Tank flyer (PDF)