Monday, June 25, 2007

The Corrosive Impact of Race-based Preferences in Living Color

Nikita Rau (pictured), a precocious 11 y/o of Indian descent has been denied entrance into an elite NYC public school because of her race.

"I feel bad because I would have gotten in if I was white," said Nikita, and she’s right. Nikita took an entrance exam to get into Mark Twain Middle School IS 239, a magnet school for gifted students and scored and scored a 7Unfortunately due to a 18 974 Consent Decree, which ordered the school’s “desegregation,” 40% of the seats were reserved for minorities and 60% for whites.

In May, the Education Department sent her parents a letter that said Nikita was not accepted - even though white students who scored lower on the same test were admitted.

School officials told the Raus that because Nikita is classified as a minority, she would need to score at least 84.4 to be accepted, while white students needed to score 77 or more.

Her mom, Dr. Kanchan Rau, said that when she discussed the disparate treatment with Schools Regional Enrollment Director Paul Helfman, "he said, 'I agree with you: It's not right; it's not fair - but there's nothing I can do.' "

Kanchan Rau said Nikita reacted with "surprise and shock" after being told her skin color was keeping her out of the school.


Rachel said...

one word that has a major effect:
SUE !!!!

JMK said...

Yes, that's true Rachel. It seems very arbitrary, to say the least.

Why have standards at all, if they're going to mean so little and why have different standards for different groups?

It doesn't make sense.

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