Think black boys face a rough road to college? Try being a black girl [The Hechinger Report]

Written on 11 June 2015, 08:13pm under As Seen In

On so many measures Black girls are overlooked and undervalued. This includes the gauntlet they must run to make it into college. In my latest at The Hechinger Report I assert that a range of obstacles make it harder for Black girls to make it out of high school and into the ivy halls of higher education – including, but not limited to, access to experienced teachers and rigorous high school courses, disproportionately harsh discipline and the availability of school counselors.


This is the season of new beginnings. High school graduations, filled with proud parents clutching balloons and cell-phone cameras, mark the end of 12 years of education as young adults embark on an exciting new phase of life. Yet as we celebrate the completion of the race, we often give scant attention to the endurance and perseverance required to finish. This is particularly acute for black girls. When the emphasis is on crossing the finish line, we can overlook the unique struggle of black girls – how race, gender, and class combined create hurdles that can make their path to college a steeplechase.

…researchers found an overwhelming majority of black students aspired to college – 87 percent – while only 65 percent had enrolled in a two- or four-year postsecondary program that fall. That’s an unconscionable number of unrealized dreams and aspirations.

Read more on Black girls’ unique struggle to get to college.

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