Rev. Al Sharpton & National Action Network call upon John Boehner and the Republicans to unite to close the achievement gap after an alarming study reveals an educational crisis beyond proportions—
Rev. Al Sharpton and National Action Network (NAN), one of the country’s leading civil rights organizations, announced today that they are calling upon GOP leadership to unite across partisan lines to address the alarming study that has revealed that the proficiency of Black students is found to be far lower than expected. Rev. Sharpton asserts that the Midterms may have revealed divisions but the one wake up call that could unify parties is a concerted effort to address the national crisis. This could be the one issue that President Obama and Mr. Boehner can show leadership above party lines. According to Rev. Sharpton: “If Education Secretary Arne Duncan and former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and I can unite to crisscross the country at President Obama’s request to highlight the disparity, certainly the nation’s political parties can unite in the wake of this crisis.”
According to today’s New York Times: Only 12 percent of black fourth-grade boys are proficient in reading, compared with 38 percent of white boys, and only 12 percent of black eighth-grade boys are proficient in math, compared with 44 percent of white boys. Reverend Sharpton has identified education as the civil rights issue of the 21st century and partnered with conservatives and liberals alike to advance the agenda of improving education for all students and closing the achievement gap for minority and underprivileged students. Rev. Sharpton says that he hopes that after the new Congress is sworn in that Mr. Boehner and Congressional leaders will meet with civil rights leaders around a bipartisan effort in this area.
BACKGROUND: Proficiency of Black Students Is Found to Be Far Lower Than Expected