Right there on the front page of the Teach for America St. Louis website is an alarming statistic.
“Today, students at Sumner High School – the oldest historically black high school west of the Mississippi – are prepared to earn an average of 14 on the ACT. Just 10 miles away in the wealthier district of Clayton, students are prepared to earn an average score of 26,” the website reads.
The organization is now taking aim at changing the educational gap that exists between opportunities in St. Louis County and St. Louis City.
“There is absolutely a gap,” Executive Director of Teach for America in St. Louis Brittany Packnett said. “When you look at the zip codes that our young people are born into they absolutely determine the quality of the education you receive. That just shouldn’t be. That’s not a free America. That’s not an equitable St. Louis.”
“We’re committed to changing that.”
Clayton has magic dirt, and The Ville has tragic dirt. The way to change that is to dig up all of Clayton’s dirt and send it to The Ville, and vice versa.
You better do that before anyone gets the idea to suggest that the reason for the gap is because Sumner’s service area comprises a lot of shiftless blacks, and Clayton is full of the sons and daughters of Washington University professors and a disproportionate percentage of the region’s physician specialists. And you better do that before someone lets the cat out of the bag that lots and lots of Can’t Teach for America recruits quit after one semester. And you better do that before someone reminds everyone that we’ve already been through a multi-decade multi-billion dollar putsch to “change the educational gap that exists between opportunities in St. Louis County and St. Louis City,” that being interdistrict deseg and busing, aka VICC, whose administrative headquarters are based, ironically enough, in Clayton.