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Soil of misfortune: Education, poverty, and race in a rural south Florida community

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Date Issued:
2005
Summary:
This dissertation addresses the structural components of education in the United States and how they have hindered the ability of a community's black and brown children to obtain the knowledge and resources needed to succeed and adapt to the changing circumstances of their region and beyond. It will do so through a case study of a small community in the American South, where the failure of education to provide access to the American dream has been clearly demonstrated in persistent poverty and lack of opportunity available to its residents. Belle Glade, Florida is a rural community centrally located within the Everglades Agricultural Area. Fifty years after the historic 1954 Brown vs. Board decision, which outlawed school segregation and the separate but equal claims of Plessy vs. Ferguson, little has changed in this poor rural community. This study shows that this community, rather than representing an isolated case, is reflective of many small non-metro communities of the American South. Though integration initially intended to balance the great disparity that existed between the schools for black children and schools for white children in regards to facilities, materials, and curriculum, in Belle Glade and throughout the South those same disparities still exist today. This study argues that current state education policies, modeled after the federal government's "No Child Left Behind Plan," are a veneer for a separate and unequal educational policy and practice in the state of Florida. It seeks to explore and document why this has occurred, and place this case study within the larger context of structural inequalities on the local, national and global levels. How is it that the "freest nation in the world" with the largest gross national product has yet to fulfill its most fundamental promise to this community---equal opportunity and access to quality education? Thus, this dissertation asks why regardless of the policies, plans, curricula and tests the district and state adopt, at times with the best of intentions, nothing seems to improve the conditions of these black citizens? More importantly, when these issues are addressed, who speaks, under what conditions and for whom?
Title: Soil of misfortune: Education, poverty, and race in a rural south Florida community.
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Name(s): Gonzalez, Juan Carlos.
Florida Atlantic University, Degree grantor
Kirsch, Max H., Thesis advisor
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Electronic Thesis Or Dissertation
Issuance: monographic
Date Issued: 2005
Publisher: Florida Atlantic University
Place of Publication: Boca Raton, Fla.
Physical Form: application/pdf
Extent: 263 p.
Language(s): English
Summary: This dissertation addresses the structural components of education in the United States and how they have hindered the ability of a community's black and brown children to obtain the knowledge and resources needed to succeed and adapt to the changing circumstances of their region and beyond. It will do so through a case study of a small community in the American South, where the failure of education to provide access to the American dream has been clearly demonstrated in persistent poverty and lack of opportunity available to its residents. Belle Glade, Florida is a rural community centrally located within the Everglades Agricultural Area. Fifty years after the historic 1954 Brown vs. Board decision, which outlawed school segregation and the separate but equal claims of Plessy vs. Ferguson, little has changed in this poor rural community. This study shows that this community, rather than representing an isolated case, is reflective of many small non-metro communities of the American South. Though integration initially intended to balance the great disparity that existed between the schools for black children and schools for white children in regards to facilities, materials, and curriculum, in Belle Glade and throughout the South those same disparities still exist today. This study argues that current state education policies, modeled after the federal government's "No Child Left Behind Plan," are a veneer for a separate and unequal educational policy and practice in the state of Florida. It seeks to explore and document why this has occurred, and place this case study within the larger context of structural inequalities on the local, national and global levels. How is it that the "freest nation in the world" with the largest gross national product has yet to fulfill its most fundamental promise to this community---equal opportunity and access to quality education? Thus, this dissertation asks why regardless of the policies, plans, curricula and tests the district and state adopt, at times with the best of intentions, nothing seems to improve the conditions of these black citizens? More importantly, when these issues are addressed, who speaks, under what conditions and for whom?
Identifier: 9780542271663 (isbn), 12161 (digitool), FADT12161 (IID), fau:9068 (fedora)
Collection: FAU Electronic Theses and Dissertations Collection
Note(s): Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters
Thesis (Ph.D.)--Florida Atlantic University, 2005.
Subject(s): Social capital (Sociology)--United States
Segregation in education--Florida--Belle Glade
African Americans--Education--History--20th century
Educational change--Florida--Belle Glade
Race relations in school management--Florida
Discrimination in education--Florida
Held by: Florida Atlantic University Libraries
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/fcla/dt/12161
Sublocation: Digital Library
Use and Reproduction: Copyright © is held by the author, with permission granted to Florida Atlantic University to digitize, archive and distribute this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Use and Reproduction: http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/InC/1.0/
Host Institution: FAU
Is Part of Series: Florida Atlantic University Digital Library Collections.