Logo Click BACK to return to Basecamp
Lost Teachers
Search Info
White beveled edge

Irene Dispatch

Meet Irene

Irene Archive



Yay! We're Different!!


Irene hangs out at the University of Texas at Austin where affirmative action was banned in 1996

When you go to school, what do you see?

Do you see lots of faces that are the same color as yours, maybe all white or all black? Or do you go to school where there are all kinds of kids - white kids, black kids, Asian kids, Latino kids, American Indian kids - you name it?

If there are lots of different colors at your school, you're lucky! A long time ago it wasn't that way, and people fought with each other when it was time to change.
UCLA hosts a bunch of groups angry about the loss of diversity at their school

Ask your mom or dad. They might remember when white kids went to all-white schools, and black kids went to all-black schools. The problem was that the schools the white kids went to were better than those the black kids went to. That's unfair!!

One day, the President of the United States said that everyone should go to a good school. So the kids that went to the all-black schools took long bus rides to go to the white schools.

In the beginning, a lot of parents of white kids didn't like the idea and made things hard for the black kids, who only wanted to go to a good school. It was really hard for the black kids, who had to take long bus rides and then put up with white kids who were mean to them.
Asians make up almost 40% of UC Berkeley, almost 50% of UCLA and over 50% at the University of California at Irvine

But you know what? The black kids made it through. They tried really hard in school and did well. And after a little while, people got used to the idea of mixing all kinds of people in schools. Even those white parents.

Now, as our country grows and becomes even more of a melting pot, all kinds of kids go to school together. Not just white kids and black kids, but Asian kids, Latino kids, American Indian kids and kids from every place you can think of!!

That's a really good thing because we all have something to learn from the person sitting next to us. And if that person has skin that's a different color from ours, we have even more to learn! Get to know the person who looks different from you! They can teach you something you don't know!


Please email me at: irene@ustrek.org


Links to Other Dispatches

Stephanie - Speak up! Let your voice be heard
Stephen - Forget classrooms! There are more things to learn and great ways to learn them