Pharos-Tribune

Columns

November 3, 2013

CEPEDA: Demolishing stereotypes

CHICAGO — Meditate on this routinely ignored fact: Not all minority children are disadvantaged or at risk.

Despite all the terrible statistics you hear and read about the seemingly insurmountable obstacles minority and immigrant children must overcome, these kids are not hopeless.

They deserve better than to be assumed a lost cause to poverty, discrimination and other limitations. Now there’s research to prove it.

According to a study conducted by the Society for Research in Child Development (SRCD), substantive indicators of success are regularly overlooked in research and discussions about minority kids and their life prospects.

In SRCD’s recently published social policy report, “Positive Development of Minority Children,” lead author Natasha J. Cabrera and the society’s Ethnic and Racial Issues Committee note:

“Although the development and well-being of ethnic and racial minority children have received sustained attention over the past few decades from policymakers, researchers, and practitioners, these efforts have contributed to a body of knowledge that, while rigorous and insightful, has often been deficit-oriented, emphasizing the negative effects of inadequate economic and social resources and an elevated rate of behavior problems, decreased social competence, and lower rates of school success among these children.

“A primary focus on adversity has had the unintended consequence of eclipsing the strengths or assets that minority families possess to raise healthy children.”

As I’ve written before, these ubiquitous pessimistic narratives of minority children create what Pedro Noguera, author of “The Trouble With Black Boys ... and Other Reflections on Race, Equity, and the Future of Public Education,” describes as “Pobrecito Syndrome.” This is when well-meaning people lower their expectations as a form of sympathy for students who are poor, minority or don’t have native English speakers at home.

Yet despite many real life challenges, minority students have unique repositories of strengths that are rarely taken into account in discussions of natural aptitudes, academic assets or adaptability.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Columns
  • PARKER: It's time to take a joke, America In selecting Stephen Colbert to replace David Letterman as host of the "Late Show," CBS has waged war on America's Heartland -- or so proclaims that Palm Beach font of heartland mirth, Rush Limbaugh. Don't you believe it, Heartlanders. But wait, ther

    April 16, 2014

  • KITCHELL: Forum about adding answers, subtracting questions A week from tonight, Logansport residents and those outside Logansport who purchase electricity from the Logansport Municipal Utilities will have a chance to find out some things for themselves. A free forum at McHale Performing Arts Center will feat

    April 16, 2014

  • MARCUS: Truth is often unwelcome Jim Feelwright greeted me warmly as I entered the room: “Well, here he is, Mr. Negative.” Since it was a friendly meeting, I borrowed a famous line from the movies: “You can’t handle the truth.” “You,” he said, “just don’t want to see what’s really h

    April 15, 2014

  • VILLAGE IDIOT: Signs of spring finally upon us Today I saw my first crocus popping up after the long winter. It was in a picture a friend posted on Facebook. Suddenly, it seemed everyone was posting pictures of buds on trees, robins on the lawn, green shoots coming up in the garden. It was almost

    April 15, 2014

  • Brian Bosma BOSMA: House Republicans achieve legislative priorities When the General Assembly began its work last November, as Speaker I pledged a session driven by five main issues: increased road funding, enhanced job training, early childhood education, fair business taxation and cutting government red tape. With

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • LYONS: Taking pity on the Plutocrats "Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that belie

    April 14, 2014

  • KNISELY: Let the games continue I try to learn something every week. It used to be every day but that got tiring after a while. Well, this week I learned that everyone is a comedian. And by everyone, I mean everyone. I wrote last week about how my hatred of oranges turned into an

    April 13, 2014

  • PETERS: Vitamin D levels can be checked

    My mother lives with me and I'm involved in her medical care. She's a tough cookie. But like many 88-year-olds, she has several health problems. We visit her doctor at least once a month to report what's working and what isn't doing the trick. Recent

    April 13, 2014

  • GUEST COLUMN: United Way offers details explanation It has been brought to the attention of the United Way of Cass County (UW) administration that unfair and inaccurate reports have surfaced regarding the recent decision by the UW Board of Directors to remove Mental Health America of Cass County (MHAC

    April 13, 2014

  • HOWEY: Mike Pence for president? Stay tuned Mike Pence for president? The swirl of 2016 national ticket talk surrounding Gov. Pence intensified over the past few weeks. I sat down with the governor in his office on Tuesday to find out what he's really thinking. A few hours prior, the Weekly S

    April 13, 2014

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should e-cigarette marketing be regulated like tobacco?

Yes
No
Unsure
     View Results
Featured Ads
AP Video
Tributes Mark Boston Bombing Anniversary Raw: Kan. Shooting Suspect Faces Judge US Supports Ukraine's Efforts to Calm Tensions Suspect in Kansas Shootings Faces Murder Charges Ukraine: Military Recaptures Eastern Airport Raw: Storm Topples RVs Near Miss. Gulf Coast NASA Showcases Lunar Eclipse Pistorius Cries During Final Cross-Examination The Boston Marathon Bombing: One Year Later Michael Phelps Set to Come Out of Retirement First Women Move to Army Platoon Artillery Jobs Sex Offenders Charged in Serial Killings Police: Woman Stored Dead Babies in Garage OC Serial Murder Suspects May Have More Victims Family: 2 Shot in Head at Kan. Jewish Center Raw: Horse Jumping Inspires 'Bunny Hop' After Attack, Officials Kill 5 Bears in Florida Popular Science Honors Year's Top Inventions ND Oil Boom Attracting Drug Traffickers
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.