Bad investment

Dear Editor:Now tell me if you've heard this one before. In the article "Report: Most Minorities in College do not Graduate" (The Downey Patriot, 5/19/11), compiled by Sacramento State University, it states that the population of the state's community college system is nearly half a million, with 50% being Black or Latino, yet only 39% complete school, including 20% of Latinos. What a shame ! Michele Siqueiros, executive director of the Campaign for College Opportunity, writes about "improving college completion and closing racial gaps" and that "we have a long way to go to achieve the levels of student success." She goes on to say that "we must improve the performance of our students." But here is where the solution sounds so familiar: play the old money and race factor. The article states that "in today's fiscal environment, resources must be used more efficiently to increase student success" and "our state policymakers must also ensure adequate funding." I understand the money part, but are we supposed to believe that race is also the reason for the "disparities across racial/ethnic groups in rates of progress and completion"? I wonder why Asians are left out of the equations. They seem to succeed in spite of their ethnicity and lack of funds. Yet we are expected to feel sorry for poor student performance and we should feel the "need to pitch in and support" failed programs with the same failed results. Should we again be asked to invest in programs who do not invest in themselves? We have all seen in the past that throwing money at a problem is not the answer. In dire fiscal times, we must cut money from programs in which we do not see a fair return. -- Ed Romero, Downey

********** Published: June 2, 2011 - Volume 10 - Issue 7