Scanned image of the page. Keyboard directions: use + to zoom in, - to zoom out, arrow keys to pan inside the viewer.

Page Options

Download this Issue


Something wrong?

Something wrong with this page? Report problem.

Rights / Permissions

This collection, digitized in collaboration with the Michigan Daily and the Board for Student Publications, contains materials that are protected by copyright law. Access to these materials is provided for non-profit educational and research purposes. If you use an item from this collection, it is your responsibility to consider the work's copyright status and obtain any required permission.

May 28, 2002 - Image 4

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2002-05-28

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

4 - The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, May 28, 2002
K letters@michigandaily.com Editor in Chief Editorial Page Editor
STUDENTS AT THE Unless otherwise noted, unsigned editorials reflect the opinion o
UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN the majority of the Daily's editorial board. All other pieces do not
SINCE 1890 necessarily reflect the opinion of The Michigan Daily.
U rban public schools are commonlym nh imanaged to succeed against the obstacles
held as one of the principal factors e they continuously face.
preventing students in minority and I Successful MEAP test performance
high poverty areas from achieving their Study proves urban schools can and do succeed offers more than hope to teachers and
potential. Critics often point to the ailing school officials who have been given th
Detroit Public School system as a bleak - arduous task of achieving success in under
example of public education gone awry, cit- Of that figure, 77 were Detroit schools. there is nothing public schools could do funded and overcrowded schools. Real
ing dismal performance on Michigan While Detroit Public Schools' MEAP test about urban children not performing well." gains have been made in schools once
Educational Assessment Program standard- scores are below the state average overall, the Refuting this notion is necessary for thought of as hopeless. Furthermore, these
ized tests. A recently released study, howev- study sheds new light on long held beliefs schools to continue improving performance gains have made without the necessary
er, offers strong countervailing evidence that typically cast aside urban schools as and to counter the defeatist rhetoric advanced public and governmental support and in the
indicating that despite average overall per- unable to compete with better-funded subur- by those who would like to take funding away face of many misguided and politically
formance gaps on the tests, many urban ban schools. The study offers concrete evi- from urban schools. This study no longer motivated calls for further reductions in
schools are in fact among the top perform- dence that urban public schools, often the allows those who advocate stripping schools funding and support.
ing schools in the state. center for minority and poverty-stricken fam- of already meager resources to rely upon the Urban public schools have made great
The study, called Dispelling the Myth, ilies, can and do produce high-achieving stu- notion that urban schools fail or more pre- strides, but more must be done given the
was conducted by the Education Trust, a non- dents, many among the state's best. cisely that they can never succeed. overall performance gaps. Dozens of
profit Washington, D.C.-based research Urban school success is the product of Proponents of school vouchers, who con- Detroit's urban schools have risen to b
group focusing on improving schools that local control, determination and sound edu- tend that the only solution to the plight faced among the best in the state, but many more
serve high percentages of low-income, cational strategies on the part of dedicated by urban schools is to take funding away continue to lag behind. The Education Trust's
Latino, African-American and Native teachers and administrators, according to from the poorest performing schools, com- recent study offers hope to the many schools
American students, demonstrates that 188 Hugh Price, president and CEO of the monly advance such reasoning. This study that may have begun to adopt the defeatist
schools in designated high-poverty and high National Urban League. "By documenting offers clear reasons not to endorse such attitude possessed by many public officials.
minority areas performed in the top one-third that many urban schools are doing well, the plans and encourages the expansion of Public schools can and do work. It is time
of all state schools on MEAP tests in 2000. Education Trust has dispelled the myth that expanded resources in schools that have they are treated as such.

DARTAs promise
Authority must plan for future and address labor issues
D etroit is plagued with ineffective House within two weeks and is currently
transit systems that fail to either con- being considered by the State Senate.
nect the numerous suburbs and sur- However, there are concerns associated
rounding cities with Detroit's downtown with the legislation. The American
core or provide rapid navigation throughout Federation of Labor-Congress of
the city. This historical problem, which Industrial Organizations and United Auto
began with the anti-transit practices of auto- Workers are worried that the system could
mobile companies in the '50s, continues to be privatized and fails to protect union
effect the region's quality of life. Chronic jobs. The legislature must address these
traffic jams and poor air quality are two of concerns and ensure that if DARTA is cre-
the more irritating manifestations of these ated, its workers will earn a living wage
problems. In an attempt to alleviate these and the system must be publicly run.
persistent problems, legislators are Privatization would hurt both
working to create a regional trans- DARTA needs to workers and the citizens who
portation authority. examine future use the service. Privatization
The State of Michigan has sev- growth trends and of mass transportation often
eral authorities to regulate mass implement new leads to erratic service when
transportation in metropolitan forms of mass staff and maintenance are cut.
Detroit, but they have been largely transit to improve With the exception of these
unproductive. The Detroit the area's concerns, DARTA is promising.
Department of Transportation and transportation. The region needs a comprehen-
the Suburban Mobility Authority sive solution to transportation
for Regional Transit receive $84 million weaknesses that allows the counties of the
annually through the Regional region to work together for solutions.
Transportation Coordinating. The limited DARTA will provide this important opportu-
forms of transportation they provide - a nity. In addition, with the creation of
fleet of busses, the PeopleMover and vintage DARTA, the region will most likely receive
trolleys - are not adequate to cope with the more federal transportation funding.
region's population and transportation needs. However, DARTA cannot stop with bus ser-
The first hurdle for better transporta- vice and light-rail. The authority needs to
tion was tackled in June 2001 when a plan develop a master plan for the future of
for a new authority, HB 5467 was intro- regional transportation. DARTA needs to
duced in the legislature. The bill, support- examine future growth trends and imple-
ed by former state representative and cur- ment new forms of mass transit to improve
rent mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, would cre- the area's transportation.
ate the Detroit Area Regional Transit Due to negotiating difficulties, the bill
Authority, a public transportation authori- will not be voted on by the Senate until
ty that would better regulate existing after the summer recess. The legislature
busses within 100 miles of the city while must work quickly to reach an acceptable
adding more routes and services. Once bill that benefits the region and provides
referred to the House Committee on the necessary financial infusions for a
Commerce, the bill passed through the successful system.

Housing for all
City must approve the Carrot Way Development


nn Arbor may have a reputation for like Carrot Way. The recently released
being an inclusive and liberal com- Northeast Area Plan acknowledges this scarcity
munity, but many of its residents con- and identifies it as one of Ann Arbor's major
tinue to prove otherwise. At last Tuesday's community objectives.
Ann Arbor Planning Commission meeting, Unfortunately, many residents around the
homeowners from northeast Ann Arbor vig- proposed Dhu Varren Road site don't view the
orously resisted the Carrot Way Development project from the same community-oriented
plan, a proposal that would create thirty low- perspective. They fail to see the larger picture
income housing units (managed by Avalon A valuable piece ofproperty has become avail-
Housing Inc.) and a new warehouse for able for the development of low-income hous-
Washtenaw County food redistributer, Food ing in a city where many of its workers cannot
Gatherers. Despite residents' afford to live within its limits.
protests, the commission voted 9- Opposing voices Opposing voices have instead
1 to recommend the development have instead reflected a series of selfish com-
to the City Council. reflected a series plaints that put traffic jams ahead
This was the second go-around of selfish of economic diversity.
for the proposal, which was origi- complaints that The Carrot Way Development
nally tabled at a March 19 AAPC put traffic jams allows a unique way for Ann ArbA
meeting because of residents' con- ahead of to follow its own planning prescrip-
cerns. Since then, the project has economic tions by expanding low-income
received overwhelming support diversity. housing while simultaneously pro-
from neighbors of other Avalon pro- viding Food Gatherers with much-
jects and evidence has been presented that needed warehouse space. Food Gatherers and
Avalon-managed properties are well-main- Avalon are both veteran non-profit organiza-
tained, inconspicuous and community-friendly. tions who can provide creative solutions to Ann
Yet many homeowners continue to resist the Arbor's social problems. Developments that
project, choosing instead to believe that low- include organizations like these ought to be
income housing is synonymous with criminal welcomed with open arms, not resisted. All of
activity and unsightly properties. Ann Arbor benefits from the diversity and com-
The other opposing issues - traffic, munity that is created when neighborhoods an
which the Ann Arbor Public Services cities are not segregated by income and when
Department did not deem pressing enough to families are able to afford adequate housing.
mention in their review of the project, mixed Concessions have been made on both
land use and density - should not result in sides, but the homeowners, organized under
scrapping a plan that addresses basic human the name PLANSMART, vow that they will
needs. continue their fight. While it appears that the
Housing costs have risen dramatically in the opposition was the vocal majority at the
last 10 years and it has become increasingly dif- AACPC meeting last Tuesday, many resi-
ficult for low-income families to purchase dents in the area have offered their support
homes in Ann Arbor, where the average house for the project. The City Council should fol-
costs $268,000. As a result, there is an extreme- low their lead and approve the Carrot W
ly high demand for affordable housing projects Development.

Back to Top

© 2024 Regents of the University of Michigan